Stocks Close Mixed in Quiet Session; S&P 500 Slips Underwater Just Before Closing Bell
Stocks finished mixed Friday, with the Dow Industrials and the Nasdaq Composite posting tiny gains and avoiding a fourth consecutive down day. Still, trading showed little positive conviction. Producer price data for November continued to show no signs of inflation at the wholesale level, although market participants appeared unsure whether that would be enough to keep the Federal Reserve from likely beginning to soon curb its asset-buying program. The S&P 500 faded late and industry sectors in the index were split between winners and losers. Material stocks paced gainers as gold and silver rose in commodities trade. Energy shares paced decliners following a drop in crude oil prices.