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 January 14, 2020 - 4:27 PM EST
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Dow Flat, Other Indices Fade

Dow Flat, Other Indices Fade

Blue-chip stocks closed little changed in volatile trading Tuesday as J.P. Morgan Chase led bank shares higher on the back of strong quarterly results.

The Dow Jones Industrials came off their highs of the day, but still managed to move ahead 32.62 points to 28,939.67, after flirting yet again with the elusive 29,000 mark.

The S&P 500 stepped back 4.98 points from Monday's record high to 3,283.15

The NASDAQ slid 22.6 points to 9,251.33.

J.P. Morgan Chase posted quarterly earnings and revenue that beat analyst expectations, sending the stock up more than 1.2%. The bank's annual profits also reached record levels at $36.4 billion. J.P. Morgan also had a surge in bond-trading revenues during the fourth quarter.

Citigroup's earnings got a boost from strong fixed-income trading as well, with revenue from that business surged 49%. Shares of the banking giant gained 1.6%.

Delta Air Lines also reported better-than-expected earnings, boosted by lower fuel costs and strong travel demand. The results sent Delta shares higher by 3.3%.

Despite the strong results from J.P. Morgan, Citi and Delta, expectations for the corporate earnings season were low. S&P 500 profits were forecast to fall 2% in the fourth quarter on a year-over-year basis.

Elsewhere, media reports circulated Tuesday that Amazon will let sellers us FedEx's ground delivery services after a temporary ban from the e-commerce giant. This led FedEx shares to close higher by 1.8%.

The Dow gave up most of its gains, while the S&P 500 and NASDAQ erased theirs, on news U.S. tariffs targeting Chinese goods will stay on through the 2020 election even as both sides get ready to sign a “Phase One” trade deal.

China and the U.S. are scheduled to ink a phase one agreement Wednesday. The U.S. had also agreed to remove China from a list of currency manipulating countries as part of the deal. But both countries understand the U.S. will review and possibly trim existing levies no sooner than 10 months after the deal is signed.

Prices for the 10-Year U.S. Treasury gained, lowering yields to 1.81% from Monday's 1.84%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices took on 30 cents to $58.38 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices fell $3.30 to $1,547.30 U.S. an ounce.

Source: Livemoney (January 14, 2020 - 4:27 PM EST)