Oil Falls, Dollar Strengthens, Stocks Rise, Wal-Mart Continues To Rally

Crude Oil fell below the $125 mark today and stocks rallied from the news, rebounding after the first weekly drop in a month. Good news about the dollar finally strengthening also encouraged the bulls. Consumer stocks in particular were strong. Wal-Mart (WMT) continued its recent counter-cyclical success and Ann Taylor Stores Corp. (ANN) share prices surged after posting a profit that beat the Street consensus. A recap of other notable stock movements from Bloomberg:

Apple Inc. advanced $2.70 to $186.15. The maker of Macintosh computers had its share-price target raised 14 per cent to $205 at BMO Capital Markets, which said new phones and an expanding share of the personal computer market may boost earnings.

Research In Motion Ltd. climbed $7.11 to $139.88. The company introduced a BlackBerry phone with quicker Web browsing and more room for songs and videos, getting a jump on Apple’s faster iPhone that analysts expect next month.

Cablevision Systems Corp. dropped 56 cents to $24.41. The New York-area cable provider agreed to buy 97 per cent of Long Island’s Newsday newspaper from Tribune Co. for $650 million.

El Paso Corp., owner of the largest U.S. network of natural- gas pipelines, gained 31 cents to $19.54 after JPMorgan Chase & Co. upgraded the stock to “overweight” from “neutral.”

Sovereign Bancorp Inc. added 14 cents to $8 after the second-biggest U.S. savings and loan said it plans to raise about $1.5 billion in capital as the company tries to rebound from losses in 2007.

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