Stocks continue to show a lack of direction in mid-afternoon trading on Friday, as traders seem reluctant to make any significant moves going into the long weekend. The major averages have spent the session bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line.
The lackluster performance by stocks comes amid a relatively quiet day on Wall Street, with many traders getting a head start on the Memorial Day weekend.
Traders have largely shrugged off the release of a report from Reuters and the University of Michigan showing that U.S. consumer sentiment in the month of May improved by more than previously estimated.
While most of the major sectors are showing only modest moves, considerable strength is visible among semiconductor stocks. The Philadelphia Semiconductor Index is up by 1.7 percent amid strong gains by SanDisk (SNDK) and Micron Technology (MU).
Health insurance and healthcare provider stocks are also seeing notable strength on the day, while railroad and tobacco stocks are seeing modest weakness.
The major averages currently continue to turn in a mixed performance, with the Nasdaq posting a modest gain. While the Nasdaq is up 2.27 points or 0.1 percent at 2,841.65, the Dow is down 46.92 points or 0.4 percent at 12,482.83 and the S&P 500 is down 0.57 points or less than 0.1 percent at 1,320.11.
by RTT Staff Writer
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