Major Averages Turn Mixed After Seeing Initial Strength

After moving modestly higher early in the session, the major U.S. stock indexes have turned mixed over the course of the trading day on Monday. The tech-heavy Nasdaq has dipped below the unchanged, while the Dow and the S&P 500 are holding on to slim gains.

Currently, the major averages remain on opposite sides of the unchanged line. While the Nasdaq is down 10.09 points or 0.1 percent at 15,850.87, the Dow is up 104.31 points or 0.3 percent at 36,204.62 and the S&P 500 is up 5.63 points or 0.1 percent at 4,688.48.

The mixed performance on Wall Street comes after the major averages all moved to the downside last week but pared their losses on Friday.

Upbeat Chinese economic data has generated some buying interest, although concerns about inflation continue to weigh on investors’ minds.

In U.S. economic news, the New York Federal Reserve released a report showing New York manufacturing activity grew strongly in the month of November.

The New York Fed said its general business conditions index jumped to 30.9 in November from 19.8 in October, with a positive reading indicating growth. Economists had expected the index to rise to 21.6.

Meanwhile, the report said firms were less optimistic about the six-month outlook than they were last month, with the index for future business conditions tumbling to 36.9 in November from 52.0 in October.

Most of the major sectors are showing only modest moves on the day, although steel stocks have shown a significant move to the downside, dragging the NYSE Arca Steel Index down by 1.7 percent.

Oil service stocks are also seeing considerable weakness amid a decrease by the price of crude oil. With crude for December delivery sliding $0.69 to $80.10 a barrel, the Philadelphia Oil Service Index is down by 1.4 percent.

On the other hand, tobacco stocks have moved sharply higher on the day, driving the NYSE Arca Tobacco Index up by 2.6 percent.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly higher on Monday, although China’s Shanghai Composite Index bucked the uptrend and edged down by 0.2 percent. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index climbed by 0.6 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose by 0.3 percent.

Meanwhile, the major European markets are turning in a mixed performance on the day. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index is down by 0.2 percent, the German DAX Index is up by 0.2 percent and the French CAC 40 Index is up by 0.4 percent.

In the bond market, treasuries have moved lower over the course of the session after seeing initial strength. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is up by 2.6 basis points at 1.608 percent.

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