NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Stocks edged higher on Tuesday as investors held out hope that a deal to resolve Greece's lingering debt problems could be reached by the weekend.
The S&P 500 added less than 1% while the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.1%. The Nasdaq also increased 0.1% to a record 5,160, though not enough for the technology-fueled benchmark to notch a record close for the second time this week.
Eurozone finance ministers reacted positively to new proposed reforms submitted by the Greek government in a meeting on Monday. Among the reforms reported, though not confirmed, Greece will eliminate early retirement benefits, cut defense spending and increase corporate tax rates. Eurozone leaders will meet again at the end of the week. Talks have escalated as Greece faces a crucial repayment to the International Monetary Fund by the end of the month.
"What has been an ongoing distraction amidst an endless series of presumed deadlines and fruitless negotiating sessions seems to be at the point of resolution, one way or the other," Ameriprise Financial chief market strategist David Joy wrote in a note.
West Texas Intermediate crude rose 1% to $61.01 a barrel over Tuesday's session in a rally analysts characterized as a technical bounce. The commodity was also showing some buoyancy ahead of weekly inventories data out on Wednesday.
The utilities sector was the worst performer on signs of continued sluggishness in manufacturing. Edison International (EIX), Southwest Gas (SWX), Duke Energy (DUK) and Dominion Resources (D) fell, while the Utilities SPDR ETF (XLU) slid 1.4%.