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Wednesday's Energy Stocks: Wall Street, sector bounce back as oil prices surge

WallStreet and energy equities bounced back into green terrain on Wednesday, Oct.5, propelled by a surge in oil prices and slightly tempered by a private sectorjobs report. Brent crudeoil peaked 2% to close at $51.86 per barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediateclimbed 2.3% to close at $49.83. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 0.62%higher at 18,281.03, the S&P 500 moved up 0.43% to 2,159.73 and the SNLEnergy Index rose 0.24% to 275.17.

edged up 0.22% on strong volume to settle at $40.77, after itssubsidiary PSEG PowerLLC unveiled its plans to retire the Hudson 2 and Mercer coal plants in New Jersey on June 1, 2017.

Thecompany said "sustained low prices of natural gas" along with thefact that neither plant was able to clear the last two capacityauctions left it unable to justify any significant investment to upgrade theplants to meet reliability standards.

Merchantsposted the highest gains in the power sector as the SNL Merchant GeneratorIndex climbed 1.41% to 87.55. First Solar Inc. climbed 4.00% on below-average volumeto close at $39.74, PatternEnergy Group Inc. rose 2.27% in brisk trading to end at $22.12 and8point3 Energy PartnersLP advanced 2.76% on above-average volume to close at $14.50.

ticked up 0.71% in light trading to settle at $26.90, after its quarterly distribution by5.2% to 40.5 cents per unit, or $1.62 as annualized. The distribution is payableon Nov. 7 to unit holders of record Oct. 31.

spiked6.75% on heavy volume to close at $6.80, despite being with lawsuits, prompted by thecompany's admission that it received a Department of Justice subpoena forinformation on its accounting practices related to oil and natural gas leases.

Among midstream outperformers, went up 5.72% inactive trading to end at $13.50, CONE Midstream Partners LP lifted 5.19% on brisk volumeto finish at $19.25 and CalumetSpecialty Products Partners LP ascended 5.01% on strong volume tosettle at $4.40. The SNL Midstream Energy Index gained 0.85% to 119.94.

November natural gas futures the $3.00/MMBtu barrier,hitting an intraday high of $3.058/MMBtu on expectations of warmer weather overmuch of the country for the next six-to-10 days preventing sharper inventorygains. The contract settled with a 7.7-cent gain at $3.041/MMBtu.

started trading Oct.5 under the symbol ARCH, opening the session at $70 and closing down 10% at$63, following its emergence from bankruptcy court protection.

Thecompany is emerging with $300 million of cash on its balance sheet and debt of$363 million consisting of a new term loan and capital leases, about 7% of thedebt level prior to restructuring.

"Arch Coal's new equity is emerging from a balancesheet restructuring that has left its low-cost operating assets unchanged: high-qualitymet coal production in the East and [Powder River Basin] thermal coal exposurein the West," wrote FBR & Co. analyst Lucas Pipes.

In other coal stocks, Natural Resource Partners LP jumped 9.55% in robusttrading to finish at $30.50, CNXCoal Resources LP earned 4.36% on brisk volume to close at $17.48and Alliance Holdings GPLP advanced 2.29% on light volume to end at $26.76. The SNL CoalIndex climbed 1.88% to 73.18.

Market prices and indexvalues are current as of the time of publication and are subject to change.