U.S. equity markets battled higher Thursday and oil hit its highest level in almost three years as the second half of the year got underway.
The S&P 500 rallied 0.52%, booking a record high for the sixth straight session. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite, meanwhile, added 0.38% and 0.13%, respectively, and both ended within striking distance of their own all-time peaks.
|I:DJI||DOW JONES AVERAGES||29683.74||+548.75||+1.88%|
|I:COMP||NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX||11051.636385||+222.13||+2.05%|
The quiet start to the second half comes as the S&P 500 has gained 14% so far this year while the Dow and Nasdaq have both gained 13%. The major averages have booked five straight quarters of gains.
In stocks, oil-related names like Chevron Corp., Occidental Petroleum Corp. and Halliburton Co. were in focus as West Texas Intermediate crude oil jumped $1.76 to $75.23 a barrel, the highest since October 2018, as investors awaited a decision on production from OPEC and its allies.
|USO||UNITED STATES OIL FUND L.P.||67.15||+2.71||+4.21%|
Krispy Kreme Inc. shares opened at $16.30 after the company priced its initial public offering at $17 on Wednesday evening. Shares ended the day up more than 20%.
Meanwhile, Micron Technology Inc. reported earnings and revenue that outpaced estimates. The chipmaker also announced plans to sell its Lehi, Utah, plant to Texas Instruments Inc. for $900 million.
|MU||MICRON TECHNOLOGY INC.||51.00||+0.42||+0.83%|
Walgreens Boots Alliance swung to a quarterly profit, boosted by a rebound in prescription volumes. The pharmacy chain raised its full-year profit growth forecast.
|WBA||WALGREENS BOOTS ALLIANCE INC.||33.20||+0.77||+2.37%|
In deals, Philip Morris International Inc. will buy nicotine gum maker Fertin Pharma from private equity firm EQT for 5.1 billion Danish krone ($813.1 million). The deal comes as the cigarette maker continues its push into the smoke-free product category.
|PM||PHILIP MORRIS INTERNATIONAL INC.||87.36||+0.35||+0.40%|
Elsewhere, Chinese electric vehicle maker Nio said quarterly deliveries more than doubled versus a year ago.
Overseas markets were mixed.
In Europe, Britain’s FTSE 100 climbed 1.25% while France's CAC 40 and Germany's DAX 30 rose 0.71% and 0.47%, respectively.
Asian bourses all ended lower with Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index losing 0.57%, Japan’s Nikkei 225 declining 0.29% and China’s Shanghai Composite sliding 0.07%.