U.S. stocks were mostly lower, snapping two days of gains that sent the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index close to a record high, as investors weighted US services data and remained focused on economic growth and employment.
The S&P 500 fell 0.3% to 1,762.97 at 4 p.m. in New York. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 20.90 points, or 0.1%, to 15,618.22. About 6.2 billion shares changed hands on U.S. exchanges, 5% above the three-month average. Nasdaq Composite Index edged up 3.27 points, or 0.1%, to 3939.86.
“The market is going to send mixed signals in the short term,” said to The Wall Street Journal, Andres Garcia-Amaya, global market strategist at J.P. Morgan Funds. “Overall, the data this week has been fairly strong, but the market is confused about if it should like that or not like that,” he said.
Strong data suggest the government shutdown “was more a publicity event than anything else,” said Mr. Jankovskis. That would increase speculation that Fed might be able to begin tapering sooner than expected, he said. Last week, the Fed made no change to its $85 billion-a-month bond-buying program at the end of its most recent policy-setting meeting.
GT Advanced Technologies jumped 21% to $10.10 after saying it will provide equipment to produce materials out of sapphire at a new Apple plant in Arizona. Substances derived from sapphire are used in smartphones to cover camera lenses and home buttons as being more durable than glass. GT Advanced also forecast 2014 revenue exceeding analyst estimates.
CVS Caremark Corp. added 2% to $63.22. The pharmacy chain reported third-quarter profit that beat analyst estimates and raised its earnings forecast for the year.
AOL Inc. grew 8.5% to $42.02, the highest level since November 2012. The online media company reported third-quarter sales and adjusted profit above forecasts.
Tesla Motors sank in after-hours trading after the electric-car maker reported third-quarter adjusted earnings and revenue that were above consensus analyst estimates. However, it was not by as much as many investors had hoped. Ahead of the results, Tesla shares had gained 32% since the second-quarter report, and by more than 400% year to date.