Stocks finished mixed in a choppy trading session. Ken Meyers has your stock market report on the Acadiana Business Index.

  • The Dow lost 35 points to 13982. The S&P 500 Index was virtually unchanged at 1520 and the NASDAQ gained 10 points to 3196.
  • The market searched for direction throughout the day as investors digested the State of the Union address and economic data. President Obama’s agenda focused on job creation, a strengthening of the middle class as well as tax hikes and spending cuts.
  • Economic data was mixed. Retail sales posted a modest uptick in January and import prices advanced for the first time in three months. In addition, business inventories rose in December at the slowest pace in six months. As a result, sector action varied. Telecommunication was one of the biggest decliners as Sprint gave up 0.8% to $5.87. Financials were lower after a two-day rally as Citigroup fell 0.8% to $43.98. Gains in industrials limited losses. General Electric rallied 3.7% to $23.42 after agreeing to sell its stake in NBC Universal and boosting its share repurchase plan. Materials were held back by Cliffs Natural Resources’ 20.1% drop to $29.24 after posting a large fourth-quarter loss and slashing its dividend. Notable profit tallies are due out after the close from Cisco, Whole Foods and MetLife.
  • NYSE Composite volume totaled over 3.3 billion shares. The NYSE was 3-2 positive on issues and even on volume. On the NASDAQ, advancers beat decliners by 5-4 on issues and by 6-5 on volume.
  • In fixed-income, Treasuries were lower after a government auction of 10-year notes saw weak demand. The 10-year note was down 11/32 to yield 2.02%.

For the complete report, click Ken's Market Report.