Stocks finished mixed Friday as lackluster economic reports offered Wall Street little incentive to place big bets ahead of a long weekend...
NEW YORK — Stocks finished mixed Friday as lackluster economic reports offered Wall Street little incentive to place big bets ahead of a long weekend.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 28.77 to 12,348.21. The blue-chip index ended the week with a gain of 1.4 percent.
Microsoft, one of the 30 Dow stocks, fell 8 cents Friday to close at $28.42 a share and was down 0.5 percent for the week. Boeing, also a Dow stock, slipped 4 cents Friday to $85.18 but was up 7.4 percent for the week.
Broader stock indicators were mixed. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index edged up 1.13 to 1,349.99 to finish the week with a 1.4 percent gain. The technology-heavy Nasdaq composite index fell 10.74 to 2,321.80 to close the week with an advance of 0.7 percent.
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Disappointing data on manufacturing, consumer confidence and import prices reminded investors Friday that the economy is struggling. As a result, a week that began with a rally closed on a subdued note.
A New York Federal Reserve survey on regional manufacturing indicated that conditions have deteriorated this month, while the preliminary Reuters/University of Michigan survey on consumer sentiment for February showed a marked decline from January. A Labor Department report found that import prices have jumped amid higher oil prices.
Friday’s market declines, while not severe, occurred a day after investors revealed their skittishness about the economy and sent stocks down more than 1 percent. The pullback, which came after strong gains earlier in the week, followed somewhat downcast remarks about the economy from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke.
With stock markets closed Monday for the President’s Day holiday and fresh economic concerns, investors appeared uninterested in making sizable moves.
“The fear factor still sits in the minds of investors,” said Bill Schultz, chief investment officer at McQueen, Ball & Associates. “We just can’t get over that hurdle.”