Wall Street started the week with a mixed finish on Monday as investors weighed volatility in oil prices and new hope for the financial...

Share story

NEW YORK — Wall Street started the week with a mixed finish on Monday as investors weighed volatility in oil prices and new hope for the financial sector after Lehman Brothers posted results.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 38.27 to 12,269.08 after being down more than 95 points early in the session.

Microsoft, one of the 30 Dow stocks, fell 14 cents to close at $28.93 a share. Boeing, also a Dow stock, fell 10 cents to $75.02.

Broader stock indicators were mixed. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index added 0.11 to 1,360.14. The Nasdaq composite index, which contains many technology names, rose 20.28 to 2,474.78.

Stocks spent much of the session mostly lower after a fresh record for crude oil and a decline in regional manufacturing activity touched off concerns about the economy.

But more buyers turned out after an afternoon retreat in oil. And financials were among the biggest gainers after Lehman offered more insights into its financial well-being.

Richard Campagna, managing director at Provident Investment Counsel in Pasadena, Calif., said that in addition to a pullback in oil, the gains in financial stocks helped shore up confidence in the overall market.

“You’re finally seeing some stability in the financials,” he said. He pointed to Lehman’s results: “They gave more information. The fact that they’re becoming less leveraged, more transparent — all that’s positive.”

Lehman’s report, which matched a week-old forecast from the company, appeared to assuage some concerns about the ability of the financial sector to extricate itself from bad bets on mortgage debt. The nation’s No. 4 investment bank posted a second-quarter loss of $2.87 billion, or $5.14 a share. The loss was the first for Lehman since it went public in 1994. Lehman rose $1.39, or 5.4 percent, to close at $27.20.

Campagna said investors appeared to be making modest bets ahead of quarterly results due today from investment bank Goldman Sachs: “No one is really willing to let the market run and dive in until they hear from Goldman.”