NEW YORK Two major U.S. stock indexes set fresh intraday record highs on Thursday on investors' rosy outlook for big banks' second-quarter earnings, while European shares also rose and oil prices rebounded from the previous session's bruising losses.
Expectations of more central bank stimulus have contributed to stocks' gains in the past week. The view that the U.S. economy is on solid footing, as well as reduced political uncertainty in Britain and Japan, have also buoyed stocks.
The benchmark S&P 500 hit 2,168.99, its fourth straight intraday record peak, while the Dow Jones industrial average hit 18,537.57 to mark its third straight intraday record high.
JPMorgan (JPM.N), the biggest U.S. bank by assets, reported a quarterly revenue rise that beat estimates by a large margin, sending its shares up 1.7 percent in afternoon U.S. trading and boosting the S&P financial index .SPSY 0.8 percent.
The pan-European STOXX Europe 600 and the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top regional shares both reached their highest levels since Britain voted on June 23 to exit the European Union, with the European banking sector index .SX7P ending up 2.48 percent, but the two main indexes trimmed gains after the Bank of England caught investors off guard by keeping interest rates unchanged.
Thursday's gains in U.S. and European shares helped push MSCI's all-country world equity index to an eight-month high of 412.47. The S&P 500 hit record closing highs over the past three days, while the Dow has ended at record highs over the past two sessions.
Safe-haven assets such as U.S. Treasuries, gold, and the Japanese yen fell in value on the greater risk appetite.
"We saw a significant beat from JPMorgan and that's helping the psychology of the market," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities in New York.
The MSCI world equity index .MIWD00000PUS was last up 2.24 points, or 0.55 percent, at 411.54.
The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI was last up 103.51 points, or 0.56 percent, at 18,475.63. The S&P 500 .SPX was up 7.42 points, or 0.34 percent, at 2,159.85. The Nasdaq Composite .IXIC was up 19.86 points, or 0.4 percent, at 5,025.58.
Europe's broad FTSEurofirst 300 index .FTEU3 closed 0.86 percent higher, at 1,337.69.
Oil LCOc1 CLc1 rallied as short covering lifted prices, which were hammered on Wednesday by unusually weak U.S. demand for motor fuel.
Brent crude LCOc1 was last up 1.58 percent at $46.99 a barrel. U.S. crude CLc1 was last up 1.25 percent at $45.31 per barrel.
"It's always the case a day after a big rally or sell-off for people to feel it was overdone," said Phil Flynn, an analyst with Chicago brokers Price Futures Group.
Benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury yields US10YT=RR hit a nearly three-week high of 1.551 percent, partly on U.S. data showing rising inflation. Bond yields move inversely to prices.
Spot gold prices XAU= were last down 0.81 percent at $1,331.51 an ounce.
(Additional reporting by Marc Jones in London, Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru and Karen Brettell and Barani Krishnan in New York; Editing by James Dalgleish and Tom Brown)
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Updated Date: Jul 14, 2016 23:45 PM