U.S. stocks opened higher on Monday as investors looked to extend its' three-week advance into this holiday-shortened week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 18 points to 11,510. The S&P 500 Index rose 3 points to 1,247. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 8 points to 2,651. One merger to announce this morning. Applied Signal is jumping 8% after Raytheon agreed to buy them. AT&T is spending $1.9 billion on 4G spectrum from Qualcomm. Nether stock is reacting much. On the earnings front Jefferies is down 2% following disappointing earnings. Bank of Montreal is down 2% on a downgrade following lousy earnings last week. The rest of the financials are holding up better. Huntington Bancshares is up 4% on an upgrade. Sallie Mae is jumping 6% following a positive article in Barrons. The commodities are mixed this morning. Freeport McMoran and Cliffs Natural Resources are both up over a percent. The fertilizers and oils are lower. Halliburton, Suncor Energy, and Rowan were upgraded, but it doesn't seem to be helping. After the first half an hour the rally fizzled. The techs fell into the red. Redhat and Amazon are modestly higher on upgrades. The heavy weights Apple and Google are lower. Research in Motion is down 3% even though they reported better than expected earnings last week. The Dow also fell into the red after the first half an hour. Boeing is down 3% even though they said they will expand production of their 777 planes. Through the morning the averages remained in the red with some of the financials and a couple commodity stocks remaining in the green. During the lunch hour the averages rebounded with the Nasdaq moving back to the unchanged. The financials are improving. A couple of commodities continue to perform well. In the afternoon the averages pulled back a little bit. Two interesting news stories, Medtronic and 3M are up over 1.5% as their CEOs are retiring or stepping down. That can't be good for their egos. In the last hour the averages rebounded once again. This market does not want to go down. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 13 points at 11478 thanks in part to a 3.4% drop in American Express. The S&P 500 ended up 3 points at 1,247, led by rising energy and homebuilding stocks. The Nasdaq Composite gained 6 points to 2,649.
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