US STOCKS-Wall St gains in short volatile session
* ADP jobs report and jobless claims both better than forecast
* Technology among day's strongest sectors
* WTI crude jumps above $102 per barrel on unrest in Egypt
* Dow up 0.5 pct, S&P 500 up 0.2 pct, Nasdaq up 0.5 pct
NEW YORK, July 3 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose in a volatile half-day session on Wednesday as traders squared positions before the holiday and Friday's job market data.
Mixed U.S. data failed to give the market direction. Private-sector employers stepped up hiring in June and jobless claims fell, but the growth rate in the services sector slowed in June and the U.S. trade deficit widened on a drop in exports.
The three major U.S. stock indexes seesawed on thin trading volume, with some market participants already away before Thursday's Independence Day holiday. The U.S. stock market will close at 1 p.m. (1700 GMT) on Wednesday and reopen on Friday for a full session.
Equities were pressured by signs of slowing growth in China and deepening political turmoil in Portugal, where talks over the government's future threatened to reignite the euro-zone crisis.
"There's position squaring ahead of the holiday and in front of (the payrolls report) Friday," said Paul Mendelsohn, chief investment strategist at Windham Financial Services in Charlotte, Vermont.
Traders "may try to move the market in one direction or the other in the last half hour," he said.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 80.61 points or 0.54 percent, to 15,013.02. The S&P 500 gained 3.54 points or 0.22 percent, to 1,617.62. The Nasdaq Composite added 18.69 points or 0.54 percent, to 3,452.08.
The S&P 500 is down more than 3 percent from its May 21 record closing high of 1,669.16. The benchmark index has been unable to close above its 50-day moving average since June 20.
Large-cap tech stocks were among the strongest of the day, helping the Nasdaq. Cisco Systems rose 1.2 percent to $24.62 while Oracle Corp gained 2.1 percent to $30.72.
U.S. crude oil prices rose 1.6 percent to $101.17 a barrel after hitting a a 14-month high above $102 a barrel on a sharp decline in crude stockpiles in the United States and political unrest in Egypt.
Health providers were in focus after the Obama administration said it wouldn't require employers to provide health insurance for their workers until 2015, delaying a key provision of the healthcare reform law by a year.
Tenet Healthcare dropped 4.6 percent to $43.51. Universal Health Services dropped 3.3 percent to $65.97.