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The housing report also helped push the price of crude oil up $1.27 per barrel to $95.60 in New York. It has risen almost 3 percent in less than a week.

Among other stocks making big moves Thursday:

• Agilent Technologies slid 8 percent, the worst drop in the S&P 500. Agilent said a slump in global demand for its high-tech measuring products helped tug net income down 26 percent. Its stock lost $3.33 to $37.15.

• PetSmart Inc. climbed nearly 5 percent after the pet products store posted better earnings than analysts’ forecasts. PetSmart’s quarterly net income rose 28 percent, and it raised its annual profit forecast for the second time this year. The company’s stock added $3.09 to $70.53.