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Energy prices rise as severe winter weather hits the South: How the news could affect your money

The energy sector gained more than 3% in early trading Tuesday.

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Markets finished last week with record highs, energy prices spike as storms surge in the South, and some states demand repayment of unemployment benefits. How the headlines could affect your money.

Indexes close out week with record highs 

Stocks finished higher Friday, with all three major indexes hitting record closing highs. The Dow rose 1% for the week, the S&P 500 1.2%, and the Nasdaq 1.7%.

Markets were mixed Tuesday morning, following Monday's stock market holiday for Washington's Birthday.

Energy prices spike as storms surge in the South

Energy prices spiked Tuesday as winter storms and record low temperatures in the South hampered energy production. More than 4 million Texas households were without power as demand for heat overwhelmed the state's power grid.

"It's unprecedented in terms of what we're seeing both on the demand side, and in terms of the supply side," Helima Croft, global head of commodity strategy at RBC, told CNBC.

VIDEO2:1702:17
Why you shouldn't panic when markets are bumpy

Video by Stephen Parkhurst

The energy sector gained more than 3% in early trading Tuesday. Gasoline futures rose 4% and the U.S. oil benchmark passed $60 for the first time in more than a year. Consumers may see those price jumps when it comes to what they pay at the pump and for their own home heating bills.

Some unemployed workers may have to repay benefits

People who received unemployment benefits may get a notice of overpayment if the state later determines they weren't eligible for some or all of the funds received. The Covid relief package Congress passed in December gave states the power to forgive overpaid federal unemployment benefits. 

Some states, including Illinois and Colorado, have issued waivers. But others, including Missouri, expect affected residents to repay those funds, according to NPR

Words you've heard: stock market holiday

The stock market is typically open about 250 days a year, with the exception of nine stock market holidays. Before or after some market holidays, the stock market closes early.

Although the daily news can have an impact on your wallet, remember to take a long-term outlook when it comes to decisions on spending, saving, and investing.

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