The S&P 500 is ending the week less than 50 points away from its all-time high, getting a boost on Friday from a big deal in the oil sector, good economic data in the U.S. and China and a solid start to the bank earnings season. Earnings reports will pick up next week, which will be compressed due to the market closure on Good Friday.
ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., import prices climbed 0.6% in March and export prices rose 0.7% month-over-month, both of which were hotter than forecast. The preliminary University of Michigan consumer sentiment index fell 1.5 points to 96.9 in April, which was weaker than expected following a 4.6 point jump to 98.4 in March. In energy news, Baker Hughes reported that the U.S. rig count is down 3 rigs from last week to 1,022.
In the U.K., Reuters reported that U.K. finance minister Philip Hammond said that the idea of a second Brexit referendum is very likely to be put before parliament again.
In China, exports grew 14.2% year-over-year in March, topping the consensus forecast. Imports fell 7.6% year-over-year in March, which was worse than expected.
TOP NEWS: Shares of Disney (DIS) rose 11.5% after the media giant revealed details last night for its planned Disney+ streaming service. Disney announced that it will charge $6.99 per month for its video streaming service, which will immediately include content like "Star Wars" films, most Marvel movies and 30 seasons of “The Simpsons." Disney+ will roll out in the U.S. in November is expected to be in "nearly all major regions of the world within the next two years," the company noted.
Meanwhile, Chevron (CVX) shares fell 4.9% after announcing a megadeal to buy Anadarko Petroleum (APC) in a cash and stock transaction valued at $33B, or $65 per share. Following the deal announcement, CNBC's David Faber reported, citing people close to the situation, that Occidental Petroleum (OXY) pursued Anadarko for some time and bid more than $70 per share for the company, but lost out as the buyer to Chevron. Anadarko shares were 32% higher following the news.
In other M&A news, Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY) announced that its shareholders voted to approve the issuance of shares in connection with the company's pending merger with Celgene (CELG), whose shareholders also voted in favor of the deal. The transaction remains on track to close in Q3, the companies said.
Earnings season has kicked off with reports from two of the nations largest banks, JPMorgan (JPM) and Wells Fargo (WFC). JPMorgan shares were up 4.6% following its report of better than expected earnings, with chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon noting that "strong performance" across each of its major businesses drove "record revenue and net income." Wells Fargo shares initially moved up after the bank reported better than expected earnings and revenue, but the stock reversed course during the bank's conference call, within which executives gave downbeat guidance about net interest income. Wells shares closed down 2.6%.
Last night, Uber (UBER) filed for its initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange under symbol "UBER." The company reported 2018 revenue of $11.27B, including revenue derived from the company's Ridesharing products of $9.2B. Consumers traveled approximately 26B miles on its platform in 2018, Uber added.
Additionally, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that General Electric (GE) will pay a civil penalty of $1.5B to resolve claims involving subprime residential mortgage loans originated by WMC Mortgage, a GE subsidiary.
MAJOR MOVERS: Among the noteworthy gainers was Biohaven (BHVN), which surged 19.6% after Bloomberg reported it is exploring a potential sale of the company after drawing interest from possible buyers. Also higher was Adient (ADNT), which gained 13.6% after BofA Merrill Lynch analyst John Murphy upgraded the stock to Buy from Neutral and raised his price target to $25 from $19.
Among the notable losers was Allegheny Technologies (ATI), which slid 5.7% after providing downbeat guidance for the first quarter. Also lower was LogMeIn (LOGM), which fell 3.7% after Barclays analyst Raimo Lenschow downgraded the stock to Underweight from Overweight, saying the core LogMeln offering around the Gravity platform is at the end of its growth trajectory, as the impact of pricing is weakening.
INDEXES: The Dow rose 269.25, or 1.03%, to 26,412.30, the Nasdaq gained 36.80, or 0.46%, to 7,984.16, and the S&P 500 advanced 19.09, or 0.66%, to 2,907.41.