NEW YORK (AA) – Wall Street opened higher Tuesday as the price of crude oil reached its highest level this year, and in the wake of remarks by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen on Monday.
The Dow Jones rose 59 points to start the day at 17,979 points. The S&P 500 was up 3 points to open at 2,111, while the Nasdaq gained 1 point to begin the day at 4,969.
Before the opening bell, American benchmark West Texas Intermediate reached $50.35 per barrel and international benchmark Brent crude climbed to $51.30 a barrel – their highest levels this year.
Fed Chair Yellen indicated a wait-and-see approach to raising interest rates on Monday, suggesting that the bank is likely to wait until July before making a decision on a rate hike.
"If incoming data are consistent with labor market conditions strengthening and inflation making progress toward our 2 percent objective, as I expect, further gradual increases in the federal funds rate are likely to be appropriate," she said in a speech in Philadelphia.
After Yellen's remarks on Monday, the stock market closed higher, while the S&P reached its highest point this year.