Markets hit record highs on Thursday, Dec. 12, following reports that negotiators from the U.S. and China have agreed on the terms of phase one of a trade deal, and now await the "go" signal from President Donald Trump.
As of 6 p.m. ET on Dec. 12, completion of a deal had yet to be confirmed.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average settled 0.79% higher to 28,132.05, and the S&P 500 advanced 0.86% to close at 3,168.57.
Oil and gas stocks surged and far outpaced other energy indices as the S&P 500 Energy Sector lifted 1.97% to 445.40.
Chevron Corp. gained 2.22% in brisk trading to finish at $118.81. The company reached a final investment decision to sanction the development of its Anchor project in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. Chevron said it will need an investment of roughly $5.7 billion for the initial development of the Anchor project, which includes a seven-well subsea and a semisubmersible floating production unit.
According to analysts, Chevron's massive gas-related write-down for the fourth quarter could be a sign that other large integrated oil and gas majors, including Exxon Mobil Corp., could also announce impairment charges in the coming months. Exxon closed the day 2.00% higher in heavy trading to $70.34.
Shares of Encana Corp. rose 4.71% on strong volume to conclude at $4.20. The company will hold a special meeting of security holders on Jan. 14, 2020, during which the holders will vote on Encana's reorganization resolution to exit Canada, rebrand as Ovintiv Inc. and complete a consolidation and share exchange for effectively one Ovintiv common share for every five Encana common shares.
McDermott International Inc. was up 1% on light volume to 77 cents, after securing a technology contract for Next Wave Energy Partners LP's grassroots alkylate production facility in Pasadena, Texas.
Also of note, Range Resources Corp. climbed 13.55% on strong volume to $4.61; Bloom Energy Corp. saw a 10.11% increase in active trading to $6.21; EQT Corp. gained 6.89% on slightly below-average volume to $9.46; and Antero Midstream Corp. advanced 8.23% in brisk trading to $5.92.
The Alerian MLP Index was up 0.49% to 211.30.
Quanta Services Inc. closed 3.41% higher on strong volume to $41.55, after raising its quarterly cash dividend by 25% to 5 cents per share, or 20 cents per share on an annualized basis.
General Electric Co. shares were up 4.28% in heavy trading to $11.44. The California Energy Commission approved the premature decommissioning and demolition of GE's 10-year-old, financially struggling natural gas-fired Inland Empire Energy Center.
According to Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables and the Solar Energy Industries Association, solar installations in the U.S. jumped 45% in the third quarter compared to the year-ago period, despite added costs from tariffs on most imported solar panels.
Among solar companies, Vivint Solar Inc. finished 9.15% higher to $7.75; Sunrun Inc. gained 7.43% to $14.17; and Sunnova Energy International Inc. added 4.73% to $9.75, all in brisk trading. Meanwhile, TerraForm Power Inc. shed 2.46% on light volume to $15.05.
Unlike other sectors, the S&P 500 Utilities Sector was down 0.49% to 316.92.
In other electric and diversified utilities, PG&E Corp. dropped 3.46% to $11.72; American Water Works Co. Inc. declined 2.04% to $118.43; and Xcel Energy Inc. retreated 1.29% to $61.36, all in active trading. Meanwhile, NRG Energy Inc. added 1.05% on below-average volume to $39.33.
Also, TransAlta Corp. slid 2.25% to C$8.67 and Hydro One Ltd. dipped 2.22% to C$25.59, both in heavy trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
Market prices and index values are current as of the time of publication and are subject to change.