Blue chip stocks on Wall Street snapped a seven-day winning streak despite a late market surge on the back of late breaking news,
As the market closed, two major developments occurred: the Congress and Senate passed new sweeping banking regulation laws, and US authorities settled the Goldman Sachs fraud case after it made a $US550 million payment.
Both helped to push the broad S&P 500 index across the line to post a 0.1% gain to 1096.48 at the close. However, the Dow Jones Industrial Average stayed in the red, losing 7..41 points, or 0.07%, to 10,359.31.
The Nasdaq Composite slipped marginally to 2249.08 before Apple admitted its engineers knew of antenna risks with the iPhone 4. Google shares dropped 4% after it profit fell short of expectations.
Investor sentiment was also buoyed by news that BP's latest seal on its Gulf oil spill had worked,
Earlier, economic news was far from rosy. The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia's business index dropped sharply.
Producer prices fell for a third straight month in June as the cost of food and energy declined while manufacturing activity in the New York area expanded more slowly than expected in July.
Adding to the downbeat mood, China reported that second-quarter gross domestic product grew 10.3% from a year earlier, slowing from the 11.9% annual growth recorded in the first quarter.
Other markets: Europe, Asia down
European stocks finished modestly lower. The pan-European Stoxx 600 index closed down 1.2% at 252.97.
The UK's FTSE 100 index fell 0.8% to 5211.29, France's CAC-40 index ended down 1.4% at 3581.82 and Germany's DAX fell 1% to 6149.36, breaking a seven-session winning streak.
Most Asian stock markets declined, with Chinese banks falling on a poor debut for Agricultural Bank of China's Shanghai-listed shares. Resource stocks declined on concern over Chinese economic growth.
In Sydney, crop-protection company Nufarm slumped 28% after the company warned its fiscal year profit would be 50% below its previous guidance and said it was talking to bankers about its failure to meet one of its debt covenants.
China's Shanghai Composite Index fell 1.9% to 2424.30, Hong Kong's Hang Sang Index dropped 1.5% to 20255.62 and Japan's Nikkei Stock Average fell 1.1% to 9685.53.
Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gave up 0.4% to 4442.55 and Korea's Kospi lost 0.4% to 1751.29.
Commodities: Oil down, gold up
Crude futures fell following a new round of data that signalled slowing economic growth in the US.
Light, sweet crude for August delivery recently traded $US1.52, or 2%, lower at $US75.52 a barrel in New York. Brent crude on the ICE futures exchange traded $US1.28, or 1.7%, lower at $US75.49 a barrel.
Gold futures edged higher, benefiting from weakness in the dollar and continued skittishness about the pace of economic recovery.
The most actively traded contract for August delivery was up $US5.10, or 0.4%, at $US1212.10 an ounce in New York.
Currencies: Dollar down, euro up
The US dollar fell against its major rivals. The euro rose above $US1.29 for the first time in two months, with the greenback also declining to its lowest level since early May against a trade-weighted basket of its competitors.
The euro was at $US1.2910 from $US1.2738 late on Wednesday. The dollar was at ¥87.36 from ¥88.28, while the euro was at ¥112.75 from ¥112.46. The UK pound was at $US1.5366 from $US1.5257.
Fri, 16 Jul 2010