Wall Street ends a choppy day mostly higher; crude oil falls

Wall Street shook off a weak start and ended a wobbly day mostly higher. The S&P 500 rose 0.2% Friday, bringing its weekly gain to 3.2%.

Crude oil prices fell after notching six straight gains, which weighed on energy stocks. Small-company stocks did more than twice as well as the rest of the market this week, a bullish signal suggesting that investors expect the economy is on the path to recovery.

Overseas, Hong Kong’s main index fell 5.6% after China made more moves to limit political opposition in the former British colony. European markets and bond yields were mixed.

After mounting a strong rebound in April, stocks have bounced around this week as traders look for signs pointing to the market’s direction.

“We’re in a bit of a hold right now looking for the next catalyst,” said Brian Levitt, global market strategist at Invesco. “There’s still an awful lot of uncertainty we have to work though.”

U.S. stock markets will be closed Monday for the Memorial Day holiday.

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