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 August 9, 2018 - 12:36 PM EDT
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S&P hesitates, other indices mixed

S&P hesitates, other indices mixed

Stocks traded little changed on Thursday as the S&P 500 was within striking distance of reaching an all-time high.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 31.71 points to 25,552.04, as Merck lagged.

The S&P 500 gained 0.11 points to 2,857.81, as energy underperformed.

The NASDAQ gained 22.52 points to 7,910.85, as Amazon shares hit an all-time high and Apple rose nearly 1%.

Entering Thursday's session, the S&P 500 was just 0.5% away from reaching 2,872.87, a record high set on Jan. 26. The broad index has climbed back to record territory as strong quarterly earnings have largely offset worries about rising trade tensions.

Nearly 90% of S&P 500 companies have reported quarterly results thus far. Of those companies, 76% have reported better-than-expected earnings. Overall, S&P 500 earnings for the second quarter are up more than 24% versus the year-earlier period.

Booking Holdings and Norwegian Cruise Line both reported better-than-expected earnings on Thursday. Shares of Norwegian Cruise Line rose more than 4%, but Booking Holdings fell after issuing a weak third-quarter profit forecast.

Trade tensions have simmered throughout the strong earnings season, however. Beijing announced Wednesday it would counter the most recent round of U.S. tariffs with its own. The Chinese Ministry of Commerce announced a 25% charge on $16 billion worth of U.S. goods. In total, 333 goods have been picked out by China, including vehicles, various types of fuels, recyclables and fiber optical cables.

The producer's price index remained unchanged in July, while economists expected a gain of 0.2%. The report comes as the latest reading of the consumer price index — a key metric for inflation — is set for release on Friday.

Prices for the benchmark for the 10-year U.S. Treasury gained sharply, lowering yields to 2.94% from Wednesday's 2.97%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions

Oil prices shed three cents to $66.91 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices fell 70 cents to $1,220.30 U.S. an ounce.

Source: Livemoney (August 9, 2018 - 12:36 PM EDT)