A quiet start to the open following data showing new housing starts and permits falling to record lows in April, neutralizing thoughts of economic stability. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 20 points to 8,483. The S&P 500 declined 2 points to 907 while the Nasdaq Composite shed 11 points to 1,721. The disappointing housing news doesn't seem to be bothering the financials this morning. Citigroup and Bank of America are performing well. M&T Bank is jumping 4% on a upgrade. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan, and American Express are all getting in line to pay back their government TARP money. JP Morgan has their annual meeting today. More earnings in the retail sector. Home Depot had good numbers, but after a big run up yesterday, the stock is lower this morning. Lowes is lower as well on an upgrade. Dicks is also lower after beating earnings estimates. TJX is higher following earnings. Sherwin Williams is higher on an upgrade. Saks is jumping 20% even though they reported a quarterly loss. The techs are modestly lower. AMD is jumping 5% on encouraging comments the company could be profitable by the end of the year. After the first half an hour, the averages remained quiet near the unchanged level. Bank of America and Citigroup are both up over jumping 3%. Through the morning the averages moved into the green, but not by much. The commodities are performing well. In the afternoon, the averages gravitated back to the unchanged level. The rally in the financials fizzled. The techs have improved. Entering the last hour, the averages remained in the green. The commodities and techs look good. The Dow sold off into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 29 points at 8,474. The S&P 500 index lost a point to 908, while the Nasdaq Composite ended in the green, up 2 points at 1,734.
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