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Stocks Continue To Turn In A Lackluster Performance - U.S. Commentary

With some traders looking to get a head start on the long weekend, stocks are turning in a lackluster performance during trading on Thursday. The major averages have spent the session bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line.

The lack of direction being shown on Wall Street comes as many traders are staying on the sidelines ahead of the release of the Labor Department's March jobs report on Friday.

Since the U.S. stock markets will be closed for Good Friday, traders will have to wait until next Monday to react to the actual jobs numbers.

Despite the choppy trading by the broader markets, considerable weakness has emerged among electronic storage stocks. The NYSE Arca Disk Drive Index has tumbled by 1.9 percent to its lowest intraday level in a month.

Networking stocks are also seeing significant weakness, with Polycom (PLCM) leading the sector lower after providing disappointing first quarter guidance.

Gold, housing, and natural gas stocks have also come under pressure, while modest strength is visible among biotech and software stocks.

The major averages currently continue to turn in a mixed performance, with the Nasdaq holding onto a modest gain. While the Nasdaq is up 6.72 points or 0.2 percent at 3,074.81, the Dow is down 43.93 points or 0.3 percent at 13,030.82 and the S&P 500 is down 3.62 points or 0.3 percent at 1,395.34.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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