The stock market chalked up a moderate gain today, ending an uninspiring year on a positive note.
The Dow Jones average of 30 industrials rose 7.40 to 1,211.57, closing out 1984 with a net loss of 47.07 points, or 3.7 percent.
Volume on the New York Stock Exchange came to 80.26 million shares, up from 77.07 million Friday.
For the year, turnover on the Big Board came to slightly more than 23 billion shares, surpassing the record of 21.6 billion set in 1983.
Analysts noted that the market had trouble establishing any sort of trend throughout the holiday season.
They said a large number of traders have been preoccupied with year-end maneuvering for tax or portfolio-reporting purposes, while many others have been on vacation.
The recent indecisive pattern, they also observed, seemed a fitting way to wind up a year in which stock prices went nowhere for most of the time, managing only a few strong rallies that quickly sputtered out.
"This was a year in which neither the bulls nor the bears were fulfilled," said William LeFevre at Purcell, Graham & Co. "Moves -- either way -- tended to erupt quickly and then die out just as quickly."
Interest rates rose slightly in light activity in the credit markets today. Rates on short-term Treasury bills moved up as much as a tenth of a percentage point, and prices of long-term government bonds, which move in the opposite direction from interest rates, declined slightly.
Phillips Petroleum fell 1 1/8 to 44 3/4. A Wall Street Journal article said analysts viewed the recapitalization plan put together by the company to forestall a recent takeover bid as "a high-risk gamble."
Toys R Us dropped 3/4 to 38 5/8. The stock fell 7 7/8 last week, when the company said its Christmas-season sales didn't meet expectations.
Montana Power, which reduced its dividend late last week, lost 1 1/8 to 19 1/4.
In the plus column, the regional telephone stocks finished off a strong year, aided by better-than-expected performance at the companies and falling interest rates, with more gains.
U S West climbed 1 1/8 to 70 1/2; Bell Atlantic 1 1/4 to 80 3/4; Ameritech 1 1/4 to 76 3/4; Southwestern Bell 5/8 to 70 3/4; Nynex 3/4 to 74 1/4; Pacific Telesis 3/8 to 68 7/8, and Bell South 3/8 to 34.
General Motors was up 5/8 to 78 3/8, Ford unchanged at 45 5/8 and Chrysler up 1/2 to 32.
Union Carbide fell 5/8 to 36 3/4. Officials in India said they would sue Union Carbide in the United States for deaths and injuries caused by a chemical leak Dec. 3.
IBM shed 3/8 to 123 1/8 and Burroughs (ex-dividend) 3/8 to 56 3/4. Texas Instruments added 1 1/4 to 119 1/2. British Telecom ADRs added 3/8 to 12 3/8.
Capital Cities Communications gained 4 to 164 5/8 and Taft Broadcasting added 2 3/8 to 62 1/4.
In the daily tally on the Big Board, advancing issues outnumbered declines by about 5 to 3. The exchange's composite index rose .49 to 96.38.
Nationwide turnover in NYSE-listed issues, including trades in those stocks on regional exchanges and in the over-the-counter market, totaled 98.40 million shares.
Standard & Poor's index of 400 industrials gained .87 to 186.36, and S&P's 500-stock composite index was up .98 at 167.24.
The Nasdaq composite index for the over-the-counter market picked up 1.27 to 247.35. At the American Stock Exchange, the market value index closed at 204.26, up 1.47.
On the Amex, TIE Communications was the most active issue, up 1/8 to 6 7/8.