S&P Hovers Near 5,000

Stocks hovered near the flatline Thursday, with the S&P 500 on the brink of breaching the 5,000 milestone for the first time ever.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average stepped back from this week’s gains, shedding 13.66 points to open Thursday at 38,663.70.

The S&P 500 index dipped 1.8 points to 4,993.26.

The NASDAQ index moved forward 21.04 points to 15,777.69.

Earnings remained top of mind for investors, with Disney surging more than 9% after the media giant beat quarterly earnings estimates and raised its guidance. Chipmaker and designer Arm jumped 32% after reporting stronger-than-expected earnings and providing an upbeat profit forecast.

Markets also wrestled with the notion of fewer rate cuts than previously expected this year after recent commentary from the central bank and Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell dashed hopes for a cut in March.

So far this season, 77% of S&P 500 companies have topped earnings expectations, while about 68% have beaten sales forecasts, according to FactSet. These strong earnings, and a continued chug higher in 2023's winning megacap technology stocks, have boosted the market in recent sessions.

The earnings season continues after the bell with reports from Expedia, Affirm Holdings and Take-Two Interactive

Prices for the 10-year Treasury sagged, raising yields 4.16% from Wednesday’s 4.12%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices surged $1.52 to $75.38 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices backpedaled $7.40 to $2,044.30.