* Wall Street, bond yields rise after ex-FBI chief's written
* European bank shares rise after Santander rescues rival
* All eyes on "Triple Threat Thursday"
* Oil falls to one-month low after supply data
* Euro hit by report ECB may cut inflation outlook
(Adds Wall Street close; updates throughout)
By Hilary Russ
NEW YORK, June 7 U.S. stocks closed higher and
Treasury yields rose on Wednesday after the release of written
testimony from ex-FBI chief James Comey, with investors looking
ahead to his U.S. Senate appearance on Thursday, the same day as
a British parliamentary vote and a European Central Bank
A smoothly executed rescue of Spain's Banco Popular lifted
bank stocks in Europe, while oil prices suffered a steep slide
after the U.S. government reported an unexpected increase in
crude and gasoline inventories.
U.S. crude fell 5.08 percent to $45.74 per barrel
and Brent was last at $48.12, down 3.99 percent on the
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 37.46 points,
or 0.18 percent, to end at 21,173.69, the S&P 500 gained
3.81 points, or 0.16 percent, to 2,433.14 and the Nasdaq
Composite added 22.32 points, or 0.36 percent, to
In a written statement posted on the web on Wednesday,
Comey, the former FBI chief fired by President Donald Trump,
said Trump asked him to back off from a probe into former
national security advisor Michael Flynn and told Comey, "I need
loyalty. I expect loyalty."
Comey is to testify before Senators on Thursday.
Treasury prices slid after his comments were released,
sending benchmark 30-, 10- and 2-year yields
to session highs.
"The market was pricing in a much worse news flow from the
Comey testimony than what we saw," said Bruno Braizinha,
interest rates strategist at TD Securities in New York.
"But it's one risk out of the way, and now the market is
looking at the ECB meeting and the UK election," he added.
Comey's Senate appearance, Britain's national election and
the ECB meeting are what ING currency strategist Viraj Patel
said had been dubbed 'Triple Threat Thursday,' which he said
could be "an event-filled day that could send global markets on
a bumpy ride."
The lead of British Prime Minister Theresa May's
Conservative Party over the opposition Labour Party has halved
to five percentage points, according to a Kantar poll published
The euro turned shaky after reports suggested the ECB
would lower its inflation targets. It was last down 0.11 percent
"Maybe tomorrow's ECB meeting sees nothing but platitudes
and disappoints a market that is getting ahead of itself," said
Societe Generale analyst Kit Juckes.
"But (for us) that would be a huge euro buying opportunity,
because ECB normalization is coming. And when it does, the euro
simply won't be able to sustain undervalued levels for long."
In Europe, banking shares closed up 0.87 percent.
Struggling Banco Popular was absorbed by Spain's biggest
bank Santander for a nominal 1 euro, the first use of a
regime to deal with failing banks adopted after the 2008
The success of the process pushed shares in many major banks
higher, supporting a recovery for Madrid's stock market
that lost steam later in the day.
"The market has taken Banco Popular as positive news because
essentially this is not a bankruptcy but a sort of rescue, even
if its subordinated bondholders have been sharply hit," said
Giuseppe Sersale, a fund manager at Anthilia Capital in Milan.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index lost 0.08
percent and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe
gained 0.04 percent.
(Additional reporting by Patrick Graham and Danilo Masoni in
London and Richard Leong, Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss and Saqib
Iqbal Ahmed in New York; Editing by Nick Zieminski and James