- Dow Jones Industrial Average down 29.74 (-0.23%) to 13,008.53
- S&P 500 up 0.48 (+0.04%) to 1,369.58
- Nasdaq Composite Index up 1.42 (+0.05%) to 2,957.76
- Nikkei down 2.78%
- Hang Seng down 2.71%
- Shanghai Composite flat
- FTSE-100 closed
Stocks reversed earlier losses, largely finishing with small gains to just lower despite election results in Europe this weekend that cast new doubts over the region's ability to resolve its fiscal problems. Financial stocks led the turnaround, with crude oil and energy stocks climbing back near even for the day and helping lift most of the major market indices out of the red. Shares of technology and consumer companies also ended higher.
Stocks in Asia and Europe began sliding overnight in response to Socialist Francois Hollande yesterday beating incumbent French President Nicolas Sarkozy nearly 52% to 48% and Greek voters siding with anti-bailout candidates. Hollande previously has voiced opposition to various pieces of current efforts to fix the region's sovereign debt crisis and instead has said the European Central Bank needs to do more.
Greek voters largely rejected pro-austerity candidates in parliamentary elections this weekend, leaving the two major parties in a difficult position as they work to form a coalition government and continue the spending cuts needed to ensure the continuation of rescue funds.
Crude oil also fell after the European elections, sliding to a four-month low near $96 a barrel before rebounding to settle at $97.94 a barrel, down 55 cents. June gold also ended lower at $1,638.60 an ounce, down $6.10. But July copper finished with a 5.25-cent gain to settle at $3.7735 per pound. July silver settled at $30.12 an ounce, down 31 cents, while June natural gas was up 5.7 cents to $2.336 per 1 million British thermal units.
In a light day for economic news, consumer credit shot up during March at the fastest rate since late 2001 as credit-card use, and student and car loans ballooned, data from the Federal Reserve showed on Monday. Total consumer credit grew by $21.36 billion - more than twice the $9.8 billion rise that Wall Street economists surveyed by Reuters had forecast. That followed a revised $9.27 billion increase in outstanding credit February.
In company news, Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) shares finished about 1.5% higher after the financial conglomerate held its annual shareholder meeting in Omaha this weekend. The biggest news out of the conference this year was that CEO Warren Buffett saying he had considered acquiring a $22 billion company earlier this year and is still looking for an equal sized deal.
Dollar General (DG) shares rose about 1% on trader speculation it was the Berkshire target.
Also, Tyson Foods (TSN) closed about 3% higher after reporting a 4% increase in net income to $166 million, or $0.44 per share, beating the $0.39 predicted by analysts polled by FactSet. Revenues rose 3% to $8.3 billion.
Vertex Pharmaceutical (VRTX) finished up more than 55% after announcing favorable results in a Phase II study of a combination of two drugs seen as a treatment for cystic fibrosis.
(+) GTSI, To Be Acquired By UNICOM Systems Through Cash Tender Offer
(+) INSM, FDA lifts hold on company's lung drug.
(+) CECO, Regulator removes "show cause" directive for accreditation.
(-) NBG, Greek Election Results.
(-) CTSH, Sees Q2, FY11 Revs Falling Short.
(-) AIG, Treasury Department selling $5 billion stake for $30.50 a share.