NEW YORK, SEPT. 5 -- The Dow Jones industrial average gained 14 points today as the market shrugged off another 65-cent rise in the price of oil and continuing uncertainty about the crisis in the Middle East.
Some analysts said that broad market resilience in the face of sharply higher crude prices may indicate that near-term selling pressures in equities have been thoroughly exhausted.
Traders said the market responded favorably to the U.S. bond market -- where a 9/32 advance as stocks opened grew to a half point as they closed -- as well as to generally supportive trading in stock index futures.
At the close, the Dow stood at 2628.22, up 14.85, while advances outpaced declines on the Big Board by a ratio of about 9 to 5 on light volume of 120 million shares.
Technical analyst Frank Gretz at Shields and Co. said that the market seems to have established a significant floor in late August, when it fell 76 points in one day and declining shares swamped gainers by a ratio of 11 to 1. That day's trading, which set a 52-week low for the Dow, capped a 17 percent drop in the average, which "falls into the norm for such waterfall corrections."
But other analysts were less willing to say the market has hit bottom and begun a significant recovery. "I'm not yet impressed by the rally since Aug. 23, although I'm a little surprised there has not been more downside pressure," said technical analyst Anthony W. Tabell at Delafield, Harvey, Tabell in Princeton, N.J. "The market has simply 'stopped falling' -- and that's something you basically distrust until proven otherwise," Tabell said.
Among Dow components, pure oil plays prospered on the news of rising prices for crude. Texaco rose 1 3/4 to 63 3/4, Chevron rose 1 3/4 to 77 5/8 and Exxon added 3/4 to 50 7/8. Atlantic Richfield surged 3 1/8 to 138 3/4, Amerada-Hess gained 1 to 54 3/4, Amoco rose 1 1/2 to 57 3/4, Mobil added 1 3/8 to 65 3/4, and British Petroleum, Royal Dutch, Shell, Tosco and Unocal also posted full-point gains.
Among oil-service stocks, Schlumberger rose 1 1/8 to 65 1/8 and Halliburton advanced 1 3/8 to 54 1/2, but gains overall were less prominent than among the big integrated outfits.
However, non-oil stocks also contributed to the Dow's gain. Alcoa moved up 1 1/2 at 66 3/4 and United Technologies tacked on 1 5/8 to 50.
But action in IBM proved disappointing. The stock sagged 1/8 to 102 3/8 on the composite tape, unable to hold onto a full-point advance amid what appeared to be a lukewarm reception to its new line of computers, unveiled today.
Traders said a Washington Post article about the financial problems of Washington real estate developer Conrad Cafritz sent stocks of some of his bank lenders down in early trading before rebounding later in the day. MNC closed at 6 5/8, down 3/4, while Perpetual Financial sunk 1/4 to 1 1/4.
The Dow transports edged up 1.67 to 897.75 despite today's fresh spurt in oil prices, while the utilities jumped 2.39 to 198.44.
Among broad stock indexes, the Standard & Poor's 500 was up 1.30 at 324.39, the NYSE Composite rose 0.80 at 177.93, the Value Line was up 1.28 at 248.29, the Amex Market Value climbed 2.67 at 325.41 and the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.77 at 382.44.