Stocks enjoyed modest gains today as a jump in oil prices lifted energy firms, the Wall Street Journal reports. Crude futures rose $2.33, to $71.49 a barrel; Exxon shares gained 2.39%. Financials also saw advances, led by Sallie Mae, which jumped 8.2% on new government terms for student-loan pricing contracts. The Dow closed up 90.99 at 8,529.38. The Nasdaq rose 5.84, settling at 1,844.06, and the S&P 500 gained 8.33 to 927.23.