Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange
New York - AFP
US shares rebounded late Friday to end mixed after an early bout of selling on news that Ukraine had shelled Russian armored vehicles after they entered its territory.
Worries that the incident would lead to a direct clash between the two ebbed after Moscow denied the incursion and Kiev's foreign minister said he would meet his Russian counterpart in Berlin on Sunday for talks alongside the top diplomats from France and Germany.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended down 50.67 points (0.30 percent) at 16,662.91, after earlier having shed 0.50 percent on the Ukraine news.
The broad-based S&P 500 finished off a bare 0.12 point (0.01 percent) at 1,955.06, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite gained 11.92 (0.27 percent) to 4,464.93.
US markets had risen for two days straight, shrugging off geopolitical threats in Iraq and Ukraine amid signs the US economy continued to grow steadily with little evident threat of inflation.
Fresh data signaled continued modest growth in the US economy, with a slowdown in the producer price index to a 1.7 percent annual pace, and another 0.4 percent monthly gain in industrial output in July, led by a 1.0 percent rise in manufacturing.
Industrial capacity utilization rose to a post-recession high of 79.2 percent, which analysts said was still below any level that would force prices higher.
"Two months of low inflation should dampen concern the Fed needs to raise rates soon," said Chris Low of FTN Financial.
Retailer JC Penney's shares fell 2.5 percent despite the company reporting that its fiscal third quarter, ending August 2, had a narrowed loss and growing sales, as analysts questioned whether the company could sustain its turnaround.
Coca-Cola's purchase of a $2.15 billion, 16.7 percent share of Monster Beverage sent the energy drink maker's shares soaring 30.5 percent to $93.49.
Shares of Coke, which locked in its distribution contract for Monster Energy in the deal, were up 1.7 percent to $40.88.
Big banana company Chiquita Brands added 0.8 percent to $13.63 a day after it rejected a $13 a share takeover offer by two Brazilian firms, calling it "inadequate". The company left open the possibility of fielding a higher bid, saying it was not going to open talks with Safra Group and Cutrale Group "at this time."
Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year US Treasury fell to 2.35 percent from 2.39 percent late Thursday, while the 30-year dropped to 3.14 percent from 3.19 percent. Bond prices and yields move inversely.