THURSDAY, DECEMBER 5, 2013....
U.S. stocks were little changed on Wednesday as Wall Street shifted through economic reports for hints as to when the Federal Reserve would reduce stimulus, with investors on shaky ground two days before the release of the November jobs report.
"There are certainly increasing signs that the market is a bit tired," said Jim Dunigan, managing executive, investments, PNC Wealth Management.
After rising nearly 46 points early on and falling as much as 123 points, the Dow Jones Industrial Average eased its decline. The S&P 500 was little changed. Both the Dow and S&P 500 were also on pace to halt an eight-week winning streak.
Hewlett-Packard's shares rallied after the computer maker said it would cut 27,000 workers around the globe by the end of next year.
The Nasdaq rose. Plug Power was among the components rallying after the fuel-cell maker said it anticipates turning a profit next year.
The U.S. dollar held steady against other currencies; dollar-denominated commodities, with crude futures climbing to $97.20 a barrel and gold futures rising from a five-month low to $1,247.20 an ounce.
The market "wants a number that disappoints, because it will relieve the taper talk for at least another month," said Luschini at Janney Montgomery Scott. Equities moderated their decline some after the release of the Fed's Beige Book, which found expansion in the manufacturing and housing sectors, but hiring modestly up or little changed.