NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Stocks bounced back to session highs by late morning Tuesday, recovering from a brief dip after consumer confidence fell more sharply than expected.
The S&P 500 added 0.5%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.48%, and the Nasdaq gained 0.11%.
Energy stocks were the best performers on markets, even as crude oil prices hovered at lows. The sector has been under pressure after several days of sharp declines in commodities. West Texas Intermediate crude was down just 0.13% to $47.33 a barrel on Tuesday.
Major oilers Exxon Mobil (XOM) - Get Report, Chevron (CVX) - Get Report, ConocoPhillips (COP) - Get Report, and PetroChina (PTR) - Get Report were all higher, while the Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLE) - Get Report added 1.7%.
Consumer confidence in July dropped to 90.9 from 99.8 in June, according to The Conference Board data. Economists expected a reading of 99.6. The drop was tied to a decrease in the expectations component of the survey.
"This probably reflects the rise in gasoline prices over recent months and the fall in equity prices linked to the crisis in Greece," Adam Collins, assistant economist at Capital Economics, wrote in a note. "While the sharp fall in consumer confidence may look worrying following the weakness of retail sales in June, the broader picture is that consumer confidence still remains at a reasonable level."
The latest data will be one piece of the puzzle for Federal Reserve members to review as they convene for a two-day meeting on Tuesday morning. Officials are set to debate whether the U.S. economy can withstand a move off of crises-level interest rates. The Fed will release a policy statement on Wednesday afternoon. Economists do not expect the Fed to move rates this meeting, but will be looking for signs as to the likelihood of a September hike.
Markets pulled lower on Monday after a selloff in Chinese equities pressured global markets and exacerbated worries over the health of the world's second-largest economy. Monday marked a fifth day of losses.
"The global market tone appears to have improved decidedly despite continuing uneasiness about Chinese equities, with some stabilization allowing the market to re-focus on underlying fundamentals and the upcoming FOMC decision," said Gennadiy Goldberg, U.S. strategist at TD Securities.
BP (BP) - Get Report added 2% despite the oil giant taking a big profit hit on lower oil prices and a $10.8 billion charge tied to the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Revenue tumbled 35.5% to $60.65 billion.
UPS (UPS) - Get Report moved 3.3% higher after reporting better-than-expected earnings. The delivery company earned $1.35 a share, 8 cents above estimates. Total shipments increased 2.1% to 1.1 billion packages.
Pfizer (PFE) - Get Report earned 56 cents a share in its recent quarter, 4 cents above estimates, while sales fell 6.3% to $11.9 billion. The pharmaceutical giant raised full-year guidance for profit and revenue.
Merck (MRK) - Get Report was slightly higher after reporting a mixed quarter. Earnings of 86 cents a share beat by a nickel, while revenue of $9.79 billion fell more than 10% and missed by $10 million.
U.S. home prices increased 1.1% in May, boosted by gains in all cities monitored, according to the Case-Shiller 20-city composite index. Prices rose 4.9% from a year earlier, slightly lower than 5% in April and below an estimated 5.6% increase.
Baidu (BIDU) - Get Report plummeted 13% after reporting weaker-than-expected guidance for its third quarter. The Chinese search engine said it expects to earn as much as 18.58 billion renminbi, below an estimated 18.79 billion renminbi.
DuPont (DD) - Get Report shares were on watch after the chemicals company earned $1.18 a share in its second quarter, a penny below estimates, and revenue down nearly 12%. Sales were hit by a stronger U.S. dollar and lower agricultural prices.
Procter & Gamble (PG) - Get Report is set to name David S. Taylor, current head of its beauty and health care division, its new CEO. Taylor would replace A.G. Lafley who held the position from 2000 to 2009, and again since 2013. An announcement could be made on Thursday after a board meeting on Tuesday.
eBay (EBAY) - Get Report has officially closed its same-day delivery service as Amazon (AMZN) - Get Report expands its own. eBay argued the option worked for groceries and other necessities, rather than its core offerings.