U.S. stocks opened lower on Monday with investors stepping back from a five-week run higher ahead of earnings and a report that General Motors is progressing toward bankruptcy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 79 points to 8,003. GM is down 2%. Alcoa is modestly higher on an upgrade. The S&P 500 declined 8 points to 848 while the Nasdaq Composite shed 11 points to 1,640. The financials opened lower, but quickly turned around. American Express is up 8% thanks to a positive cover piece in Barrons. Goldman Sachs is modestly higher thanks to an upgrade ahead of earnings tomorrow. Other financials reporting this week include JP Morgan, Citigroup, GE, and plenty of regional banks. Citigroup is up 12% on plans of divesting more assets including a Japanese division. Wells Fargo is modestly lower after a big jump on Thursday. Even with the strength in the financials, the averages pushed lower. The Dow dropped over 100 points. The Nasdaq declined 22 points. The tech sector is lower. Google is higher, but that's about it. Seagate, Broadcom, and Apple are lower even though they were upgraded. Ebay and Corning are both down 3% on downgrades. One deal over the weekend. Express Scripts is buying a division of Wellpoint for $4.68 billion. Both stocks are higher. Textron is down 14% following rumors last week of a buy out that didn't materialize over the weekend. MGM is jumping 13% after investors in Dubai agreed to help out the firm. Through the morning the averages remained weak, but the financials actually look great. In the afternoon, entering the last hour, the averages slowly recovered with the financials in the lead. It looks liker we're getting a little short covering ahead of the financial earnings later this week. In the last hour, the averages snuck into the green only to give the gains into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 25 points at 8,057. The S&P 500 Index added 2 points to 858 while the Nasdaq Composite rose fractionally up 77 cents to end at 1,653.
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