NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Stocks were modestly higher by mid-afternoon Thursday, slightly extending a rally a day earlier that saw the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average score their biggest gains in more than a month.
The S&P 500 was up 0.28% on Thursday, the Dow climbed 0.34%, and the Nasdaq gained 0.17%.
Crude oil gave back some its gains achieved over a Wednesday rally after the International Energy Agency's latest forecasts still show a growing glut. West Texas Intermediate crude fell 1.1% to $60.77 a barrel.
The body predicts that demand for crude from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, around a third of the world's supply, will average 30.2 million barrels per day through 2015. The cartel is expected to pump 31.3 million barrels per day.
"The news of oversupply is weighing more heavily on the mind of traders than that of heightened demand, especially given the present disparity between the two," said Austin Sapp, commodity analyst at Schneider Electric.
Citrix Systems (CTXS) jumped more than 6% after activist investor Elliott Management said it could help the company increase its share price by around 50%. Among its suggestions, Elliott urged the board to parcel off its underperforming businesses and buy back shares.
Rupert Murdoch, CEO and majority shareholder of 21st Century Fox (FOXA), is reportedly stepping down from his role to make way for his son James, according to CNBC. An announcement is expected in the near term. Shares erased earlier gains and fell nearly 1%.