Dow barely higher as market bulls pause

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York City on April 30, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York City on April 30, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP

NEW YORK (AFP) - The Dow on Tuesday edged to a new record as markets essentially moved sideways with low trading volumes.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 2.82 (0.02 per cent) at 16,945.92.

The broad-based S&P 500 slipped a scant 0.48 of a point (0.02 per cent) to 1,950.79, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 1.75 (0.04 per cent) to 4,338.00.

Analysts said Tuesday's trade amounted to a pause from the recent rally, with little fresh economic data on offer.

"It was an unremarkable day when we were catalyst-light," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities.

US online giant eBay lost 2.7 per cent on news that PayPal president David Marcus would step down and take a senior post with Facebook. Facebook advanced 4.6 per cent.

Struggling retailer Radio Shack slumped 10.4 per cent after reporting that it lost US$98.3 million (S$122.8 million) in the first quarter on sales that were 13.2 per cent lower than the year-ago level.

The company cited "an industry-wide decline in consumer electronics and a soft mobility market."

Allergan rejected a US$53.5 billion takeover bid from Canadian firm Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, saying newest offer still "substantially undervalues the company." Allergan fell 0.7 per cent, while Valeant dropped 0.9 per cent.

Electronics retailer Best Buy gained 2.4 per cent after boosting its dividend by 12 per cent.

Women's retailer Chico's FAS jumped 7.6 per cent on a report that the company is considering a sale to private equity groups.

Achillon Pharmaceuticals shot up 83.3 per cent following its announcement that the US Food and Drug Administration would permit trials of its ACH-3422 treatment on patients with hepatitis C.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year US Treasury rose to 2.64 per cent from 2.61 per cent on Monday, while the 30-year increased to 3.47 per cent from 3.45 per cent. Bond prices and yields move inversely.

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