US stocks little changed as GE sells finance assets

GMT 23:34 2015 Tuesday ,09 June

Arab Today, arab today US stocks little changed as GE sells finance assets

New York Stock Exchange
New York - AFP

Wall Street stocks finished a choppy session little-changed Tuesday as a big General Electric asset sale offset worries about spiking US treasury yields.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 2.51 points (0.01 percent) to 17,764.04, while the broad-based S&P 500 added 0.87 (0.04 percent) at 2,080.15.

The tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 7.76 (0.15 percent) to 5,013.87, finishing nearly 40 points above its session lows.

"The stocks were very weak the first hours and then they were able in the midday to stage a pretty good comeback," said Mace Blicksilver, director of Marblehead Asset Management.

He said that surging US Treasury yields, reflecting the expectation of higher interest rates, had traders on edge.

"If these rates keep going up, I think you're going to get some real concerns about stocks."

Dow member GE gained 0.3 percent as it announced the sale of a pair of finance assets to the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board for $12 billion.

Southwest Airlines tumbled 4.2 percent as it reported that passenger revenue per available mile fell six percent in May from a year ago, due to weaker-than-expected economic growth.

But American Airlines gained 1.2 percent and United Continental rose 1.6 percent, with both stocks rallying from early losses Tuesday and big declines on Monday.

General Motors added 0.8 percent as chief executive Mary Barra rebuffed talk of a potential merger with Fiat Chrysler. Barra confirmed that the company received an overture from Fiat Chrysler chief Sergio Marchionne, but said GM was well positioned for growth as a free-standing company.

Dow member Procter & Gamble rose 1.5 percent following reports that the company was close to deals with various buyers to sell billions of dollars worth of beauty assets. P&G is divesting about 100 brands in an effort to focus on best-selling products.

Netflix bolted 3.2 percent higher on news of a deal with actor Brad Pitt to release his next movie, "War Machine," exclusively on Netflix and in select theaters next year.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year US Treasury rose to 2.43 percent from 2.38 percent Monday, while the 30-year advanced to 3.16 percent from 3.11 percent. Bond prices and yields move inversely.

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