Local bank stocks end mixed

Local bank stocks were mixed following Wednesday’s trading. First Niles Financial remained unchanged at $11 per share, while Cortland Bancorp, after losing 35 cents a share Tuesday, gained 10 cents to close at $15.60 Wednesday.

Energy stocks, already the best-performing category this year, got a boost from U.S. crude oil prices, which climbed to $51.60 a barrel, the highest level in 15 months.

Investors brushed off new data showing residential construction slowed last month.  Instead, the focus remained on the latest crop of companies reporting quarterly results.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 40.68 points, or 0.2 percent, to 18,202.62. The S&P 500 index rose 4.69 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,144.29. The Nasdaq composite index added 2.58 points, or 0.1 percent, to 5,246.41.