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June 8, 2012 at 5:14 PM
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Markets start day in red, end in black

NEW YORK, June 8 (UPI) -- U.S. stock indexes began Friday's trading session in negative territory but posted positive numbers by the day's close.

The Dow Jones industrial average posted 93.24-point gain, 0.75 percent, and closed at 12,554.20.

The Nasdaq composite picked up 27.40 points, 0.97 percent, to 2,858.42.

The Standard and Poor's 500 gained 10.67 points, 0.81 percent, and finished at 1,325.66.

Skepticism set in early after the U.S. Commerce Department reported the trade deficit fell only slightly in March to April, dropping from $52.6 billion to $50.1 billion.

Investors were also focused on Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's remarks Thursday in which he failed to commit the Central Bank to any new round of stimulus measures.

But markets rallied after a news conference in which U.S. President Barack Obama suggested recapitalizing banks in Europe, calling Europe's financial crisis "solvable."

On the New York Stock Exchange, the listed volume was 2.02 billion shares.

The benchmark 10-year treasury note yielded 1.636 percent.

The euro was $1.2507 from Thursday's $1.2561. Against the yen, the dollar was 79.41 from 79.45 yen Thursday.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 index dropped 2.09 percent, 180.46 points, to 8,459.26.

In London, the FTSE 100 index lost 0.23 percent, 12.71 points, to 5,435.08.

Kraft dumps NYSE, moving to Nasdaq

NORTHFIELD, Ill., June 8 (UPI) -- Kraft Foods Inc. Friday said it was moving its stock exchange listing from the New York Stock Exchange to the Nasdaq.

The company is in the midst of spinning off its grocery business from its snacks operations. The decision to move stock exchanges will "yield greater cost efficiencies while providing visibility advantages for the company's iconic brands," Kraft said in a statement.

The company initially will trade on the Nasdaq as KFT, beginning June 26. After the company splits, KFT will be retired and the snack business, Mondelez International Inc., will trade as MDLZ, and Kraft Foods Group Inc. will trade as KRFT.

Wholesale inventories rose in April

WASHINGTON, June 8 (UPI) -- U.S. wholesale inventories rose 0.6 percent in April, reaching $483.5 billion, the Commerce Department said Friday.

Inventories were up 8.2 percent from April 2011, the department said, while the March estimate, released a month earlier, was revised higher by $100 million to $480.5 billion, the department said.

The figures are adjusted for seasonal variations, but not for price changes.

Wholesale sales for April, also adjusted seasonally but not for prices, rose 1.1 percent month-to-month and 6.8 percent from a year earlier, reaching $415 billion. March's sales estimate was revised down by 0.1 percent or $500 million.

The inventory-to-sales ratio -- reflecting how many months it would take a company to deplete its inventory at the current sales pace -- came in at 1.17, unchanged from a month earlier and slightly higher than the ratio a year earlier, which stood at 1.15.

Oil settles at $84.10 a barrel

NEW YORK, June 8 (UPI) -- Crude oil prices closed lower Friday on the New York Mercantile Exchange, shedding 72 cents and settling at $84.10 a barrel.

Natural gas added 2.5 cents and closed at $2.30 per million British thermal units.

Home heating oil rose 0.05 cents to $2.67 per gallon.

Gasoline finished the session unchanged at $2.685 a gallon.

At the pump, the national average price of unleaded gasoline dropped a half-cent for the third consecutive day, falling to $3.555 per gallon from Thursday's $3.56, AAA said.

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