Stocks fluctuated on Monday, trading close to flat, as a selloff in crude oil countered a rally in health care.
The S&P 500 was flat, the Dow Jones Industrial Average inched 0.02% higher, and the Nasdaq added 0.17%. Stocks had seen steep losses earlier in the session.
Crude oil snapped a seven-day winning streak after Morgan Stanley threw doubt on whether an agreement between the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries would come to pass. Analysts wrote in a note that a deal was “highly unlikely” as producers remain reluctant to give up market share.
“The market treats OPEC as the central banker of oil where simple jawboning can move markets and scare off shorts,” analysts wrote. “However, we see too many headwinds and logistical challenges to a meaningful deal given past statements by OPEC and its members.”
Hopes over a deal when members meet in September have recently buoyed crude prices, particularly after Saudi Arabian Oil Minister Khalid Al-Falih said the country would “take any action to help the market rebalance” with the help of other producers.
West Texas Intermediate crude oil fell 2.5% to $47.32 a barrel on Monday morning.
Medivation (MDVN) rocketed 20% higher, pulling health care stocks into rally mode, after agreeing to be acquired by Pfizer (PFE) in a deal valued at $14 billion. Pfizer agreed to pay $81.50 a share in cash for the cancer specialist, representing a 21% premium to its Friday close. Pfizer expects the deal to close in the third or fourth quarter of this year.