Asia stocks up as takeover talk in US drives Dow
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 53.91 points to close at 14,035.67. The S&P 500 index rose 0.7 percent to 1,530.94. The Nasdaq composite rose 0.7 percent to 3,213.59.
That's despite the $1.2 trillion in automatic federal spending cuts that are scheduled to start March 1 unless Congress and the White House find a way to avoid them. Previous budget battles in Washington have rattled financial markets.
Benchmark oil for March delivery was down 2 cents to $96.64 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 80 cents to finish at $96.66 per barrel on the Nymex on Tuesday.
In currencies, the euro fell slightly to $1.3413 from $1.3416 late Tuesday in New York. The dollar fell slightly to 93.46 yen from 93.44 yen.
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