Lower Oil, Inflation Rally Stocks

Fed chief soothes markets; Lehman may have a buyer
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 22, 2008 3:36 PM CDT
A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in this undated file photo.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Stocks rallied today amid light trading but still saw weekly losses as oil prices fell and financials rebounded, helped in part by a speech by Ben Bernanke that eased inflation fears, MarketWatch reports. The Dow surged 197.85 to 11,628.06; the Nasdaq gained 34.33, closing at 2,414.71; and the S&P 500 climbed 14.47 to 1,292.19.

The Federal Reserve chief said inflation was on track to return to acceptable levels, leading to optimism the Fed will keep rates low to stimulate growth. News of possible acquisition of beleaguered brokerage Lehman Brothers by a Korean bank sent its stock up and provided a bright spot for financials. Oil futures fell $6.59, erasing yesterday’s $5 surge.