WASHINGTON (BLOOMBERG) - United States stocks fluctuated amid a raft of corporate results that did little to clarify the strength of the economy, while investors continued to assess the implications of the Federal Reserve's policy statement.
Facebook rallied to a record after reporting sales and user growth that beat analysts' projections, while Ford Motor Co. plunged as quarterly profit fell short of estimates and it warned that income targets are at risk.
Those were just two of the companies moving on a busy earnings day, with more than 60 members of the S&P 500 Index reporting, including Amazon, MasterCard and Alphabet.
The S&P 500 Index slipped less than 0.1 per cent to 2,165.65 at 9.31 am in New York (9.31 pm in Singapore), trimming a rally of more than 3 per cent in July that would be a fifth straight monthly advance.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 22.80 points to 18,449.37. The Nasdaq 100 Index pushed its July surge to 6.8 per cent.
"Earnings have been the story, and that story is getting a little long in tooth," said Jim Davis, regional investment manager for Private Client Group at US Bank in Springfield, Illinois. "We need something really positive to break out to the upside but at the same token, it's hard to walk away which is why we're not seeing a bad sell off."