Financial stocks led the Dow Jones industrials higher today after a new report suggested that inflation remains moderate. Technology stocks struggled back from an early loss and finished mostly higher.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 89.91 to close at 11,224.70, leaving the blue-chip index 61.48 points lower for the week.
Broader stock indicators posted more modest advances. The Nasdaq composite index reversed an early decline, ending 26.06 higher, at 3620.23, for another record high close. The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index rose 8.93, to 1417.04.
Banking and brokerage stocks led the Dow higher after the Labor Department reported a 0.2 percent increase in November in its producer price index, which measures inflation pressures before they reach the consumer. That followed a 0.1 percent decline in October and matched many analysts' expectations.
"The inflation trend was benign," said Alan Ackerman, chief investment strategist at Fahnestock & Co. in New York.
American Express was the Dow's strongest component, rising 7-15/16, to 167 3/4, as of 5 p.m. EST. J.P. Morgan rose 2 3/4, to 134 3/8, and Bank of New York gained 3-15/16, to 41 1/2.
Those shares received extra support from the bond market, where the price of the benchmark 30-year Treasury bond rose $6.87 1/2 per $1,000 in face value. Its yield fell to 6.16 percent from Thursday's 6.21 percent.
Technology stocks were lower for much of the session as investors resisted buying shares at prices that have risen dramatically this year.
IBM was among the Dow's weakest performers, tumbling 4 3/8, to 109. The company has said year 2000 related spending freezes at many technology companies will hurt earnings for several quarters.
That has helped put a damper on the broader technology market, said Paul McEnroe, a trader at Brown Brothers Harriman in New York. The semiconductor sector, down across the board, was hurt most by Applied Materials, which fell 3 1/4, to 109-7/16.
Selected technology shares continued to surge. Yahoo, which joined the S&P 500 after the close of trading Tuesday, rose 13, to 353.
In after-hours trading, Xerox fell 3-7/16, to 20, after it said fourth-quarter earnings could be as much as 40 percent below analysts' estimates, Bloomberg News reported.