U.S. Stocks Little Changed

By Dow Jones Business News, 

By Alexandra Scaggs And Saumya Vaishampayan

U.S. stocks were little changed in early trading Wednesday, pausing after the S&P 500 index closed above 2000 for the first time.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose five points, less than 0.1%, to 17112. The S&P 500 index was also little changed, rising less than 01.% to 2000 and the Nasdaq Composite Index slipped less than 0.1% to 4571.

Stocks rose to record highs Tuesday in a quiet session. The S&P 500 made its 30th record close for the year, and the Dow hit a fresh intraday high, in a session with the lightest trading volume for any full session this year.

There was little economic news on the calendar Wednesday, so traders eyed a regulatory filing from Chinese e- commerce giant Alibaba Group ahead of its initial public offering, which is expected next month. Yahoo Inc., which owns a chunk of the company, was up 1.2% in early trading.

"The Alibaba IPO is going to be enormous for Wall Street," said Michael Purves, chief global strategist for Weeden & Co.

The Dow has gained 3.2% and the S&P 500 is up 8.2% for the year, through Tuesday's close. The S&P 500 has recovered from a mid-July swoon, caused in part by a flare-up in concerns about Ukraine and the Middle East. The Dow isn't far behind, hovering 0.2% below its July 16 record as of Tuesday's close.

The latest advance has come amid light summer trading. That has pushed U.S. stock valuations further above long- term averages, which has left some strategists nervous that any unexpected bad news could prompt declines.

"People have to be prepared, if we continue to rally, when people get back to work [in September] you might get some volatility," said Mr. Purves.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note remains close to its lowest level since June 2013. Yields move inversely with prices. In recent trade, the yield on the benchmark 10-year note fell to 2.368%, according to FactSet.

European stocks rose, with the Stoxx Europe 600 up 0.3%. Expectations for further easing from the European Central Bank have been building in the wake of continued weak economic data and remarks from ECB President Mario Draghi last week.

In corporate news, Tiffany & Co. rose 3.7% after it reported better-than-expected second-quarter results and lifted its earnings outlook for the year.

Burger King Worldwide Inc. is coming under criticism for its acquisition of Tim Hortons Inc. that would allow the hamburger chain to move its headquarters to Canada in a so-called tax inversion. Shares of Burger King fell 2.3% and shares of Tim Hortons shed 0.9%.

In commodity markets, crude-oil futures rose 0.3% to $94.13 a barrel. Gold futures gained 0.21% to $1,286.50 an ounce.

Write to Alexandra Scaggs at alexandra.scaggs@wsj.com and Saumya Vaishampayan at saumya.vaishampayan@wsj.com

  (END) Dow Jones Newswires
  Copyright (c) 2014 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

This article appears in: IPOs

Referenced Stocks: TIF , YHOO

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