Local shares are pegged to rise this morning as the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) pushes towards the 5,500-point mark once again.

Here’s a quick recap:

  • FTSE 100 (UK): down 0.6%
  • DAX (Germany): down 0.3%
  • CAC 40 (France): down 0.3%
  • Dow Jones (USA): up 0.6%
  • NASDAQ (USA): up 0.5%

Oil prices rebounded overnight thanks to an unexpected dip in crude oil stockpiles in the United States.

Rising oil prices could help boost shares of companies such as Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) and Liquefied Natural Gas Ltd (ASX: LNG) today. BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) could also benefit, although its London-listed shares did dip overnight.

Gold shares are also sure to be in focus today. Shares across the sector plummeted on Wednesday as the shiny metal endured one of its sharpest sell-offs in years. It fell again slightly overnight, which could weigh on Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX: NCM), EVOLUTION FPO (ASX: EVN) and St Barbara Ltd (ASX: SBM) further today.

OceanaGold Corporation (ASX: OGC) and Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) were hit particularly hard on Wednesday, and will also receive some attention.

Speaking of heavy falls, TPG Telecom Ltd (ASX: TPM) and Vocus Communications Limited (ASX: VOC) continued their declines during yesterday’s session, as well. The pair have fallen sharply over the last month, with some investors suggesting now could be a good time to consider buying.

Estia Health Ltd (ASX: EHE) was another company that caused a panic amongst investors on Wednesday. The company entered its shares into a trading halt pending its first quarter trading update, which also caused shares of rivals Japara Healthcare Ltd (ASX: JHC) and Regis Healthcare Ltd (ASX: REG) to drop sharply.

Estia’s shares will remain in a trading halt until the earlier of the commencement of normal trading tomorrow, or when an announcement is released to the market.

Finally, Flight Centre Travel Group Ltd (ASX: FLT) has diversified its business in India which could receive some attention from investors today.

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Motley Fool contributor Ryan Newman has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.