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U.S. stocks little changed as market digests 2 record Dow closes

U.S. stocks little changed as market digests 2 record Dow closes

Stocks were little changed Thursday as investors paused after two straight sessions in which the Dow Jones industrial average set new record closes.
Sharply higher oil prices overshadowed enthusiasm for stocks, trumping more positive news including better-than-expected retail sales reports for September and lower unemployment claims for last week.
On Wednesday, the Dow soared 123 points to 11,850.61. The Standard & Poor's 500 also hit a 5 1/2 year high.
"Considering the distance we've come over the last three months and certainly the last three days, it's interesting we could have a data point like oil's climb and not have the market backup much," said Arthur Hogan, chief market analyst at Jefferies & Co. "It's certainly a scenario where the longer term prospects for the market are looking more positive."
Some traders have questioned the depth of the rally, saying technical markers such as the ratio of advancers to decliners are weaker than they've hoped. But others say the market's biggest fears _ high energy prices and additional rate hikes by the Federal Reserve _ are behind it, leaving room for a greater run-up in stock prices.
In midday trading, the Dow fell 11.05, or 0.09 percent, to 11,839.56.
Broader stock indicators were barely mixed. The S&P 500 index rose 0.03 to 1,350.25, and the Nasdaq composite index rose 4.47, or 0.20 percent, to 2,295.42.
Advancing issues led decliners by roughly 4 to 3 on the New York Stock Exchange.
Bonds fell as stocks wavered, with the yield on the 10-year Treasury note at 4.60 percent, up from 4.56 percent Thursday. The U.S. dollar was lower other major currencies. Gold prices rose.
Crude oil futures rose sharply. A barrel of light crude was quoted at $60.05, up 64 cents in trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
In company news, Wyeth fell 23 cents to $50.95 after a Philadelphia jury awarded a woman $1.5 million after finding that the drug company's hormone replacement drug was a factor in her breast cancer. This is the second such case against the company to go to trial; Wyeth won the first.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. was down $1.19 to $48.36 after the world's largest retailer reported disappointing September sales. Rival discounter Target Corp. rose 28 cents to $57.91 after it reported a solid sales gain for the month and beat analyst estimates.
Marriott International Inc., the world's largest hotel company by revenue, said its third-quarter earnings weakened, falling 5.4 percent. But its 33 cents per share net income beat estimates of 30 cents and the stock rose $1.57 to $39.90.


Updated : 2021-08-02 21:46 GMT+08:00