Wall Street waffled through an uninspired session Tuesday, leaving stocks narrowly mixed despite solid results from Johnson & Johnson and several banking companies as investors waited for a key earnings report from Intel.
After the close of regular trading, Intel announced earnings that were in line with Wall Street expectations, but the company's sales were at the low end of Intel's previous outlook and slightly less than analysts had forecast.
Investors were looking to Intel's results for a better read on the health of the technology sector, which was hit hard over the past week with analyst downgrades and lowered outlooks. Intel's third-quarter and 2004 outlooks, while strong, were somewhat disappointing for investors.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 9.37, or 0.1 percent, to 10,247.59. The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index gained 0.79, or 0.1 percent, to 1115.14. The Nasdaq composite index fell 5.26, or 0.3 percent, to 1931.66.
The Commerce Department's latest report on the nation's trade deficit gave the market a lift. The trade deficit narrowed to $46 billion in May, dropping 4.5 percent from April's all-time high.
Intel closed the regular session down 10 cents, at $26.14, and fell an additional 54 cents, to $25.60, in after-hours trading. Johnson & Johnson reported an 11.1 percent increase in sales from a year ago and beat Wall Street estimates by 3 cents per share. Its shares climbed 49 cents, to $55.38.
Merrill Lynch fell $1.67, to $49.80, after missing Wall Street expectations by 3 cents per share for the second quarter. The rest of the financial sector was mixed. BB&T fell 12 cents, to $37.26; AmSouth Bancorp gained 12 cents, to $24.91; and Commerce Bancorp fell 92 cents, to $54.26.
Newspaper publisher Gannett announced earnings that were in line with estimates, boosting profits by 9 percent from a year ago. But Media General, which runs broadcast stations and major metropolitan newspapers, missed its estimates by 6 cents per share. Gannett climbed 99 cents, to $82.38, while Media General dropped 8 cents, to $62.52.
* The New York Stock Exchange composite index rose 0.82, to 6504.60; the American Stock Exchange index fell 9.63, to 1250.05; and the Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks rose 0.45, to 562.69.
* Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones by 10 to 9 on the NYSE, where trading volume rose to 1.2 billion shares, from 1.11 billion on Monday. On the Nasdaq Stock Market, decliners narrowly outnumbered advancers and volume totaled 1.47 billion, down from 1.49 billion.
* The price of the Treasury's 10-year note fell $1.56 per $1,000 invested, and its yield rose to 4.47 percent, from 4.45 percent on Monday.
* The dollar rose against the Japanese yen and the euro. In late New York trading, a dollar bought 108.85 yen, up from 108.23 late Monday, and a euro bought $1.2327, down from $1.2404.
* Light, sweet crude oil for August delivery settled at $39.44, down 6 cents, on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
* Gold for current delivery fell to $402.00 a troy ounce, from $408.10 on Monday, on the New York Mercantile Exchange's Commodity Exchange.