NEW YORKâBlue chips notched their fifth-straight session of gains, while an anemic earnings report from Apple (AAPL)
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 46 points, or 0.3%, to 13825.33, notching its fourth consecutive multi-year high.
The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index ended the day almost exactly where it started, edging up 0.01 point, to 1494.82. The technology sector led losses in the index, declining 2%. The Nasdaq Composite Index, which has Apple as its biggest component, declined 23.29 points, or 0.7%, to 3130.38.
Shares of Apple dove to their lowest levels in 11 months after the tech heavyweight reported revenue that fell short of expectations and underwhelming iPhone sales.
Opinion "has soured on the name, and the stock price reflects that," said Terry Sandven, chief U.S. equity strategist with U.S. Bank Wealth Management.
The declines were most extreme in the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite. Apple accounts for a smaller share of the S&P 500, and isn't included in the Dow industrial average.
Elsewhere, 3M (MMM)
Fellow Dow component Microsoft (MSFT)
Blue chips were bolstered by a better-than-expected labor-market report. The number of U.S. workers filing new applications for jobless benefits fell to 330,000 in the latest week, the lowest level in five years.
The data is "great news for next Friday's payrolls number," said Doug Cote, chief market strategist at ING Investment Management, which oversees $170 billion in assets. The next closely watched monthly employment report is due Feb. 1.
Markit's preliminary reading on U.S. manufacturing rose to 56.1 in January from 54.0 the previous month, the strongest report since March 2011. Readings above 50 indicate growth. An index of forward-looking economic indicators rose 0.5% in December, in line with expectations. The Conference Board revised November's reading higher.
European markets edged up, with the Stoxx Europe 600 rising 0.2%. Investors weighed disappointing results from Apple and a selloff in Finnish telecom giant Nokia (NOK)
The U.S.-listed shares of Nokia slid after the company swung back to a profit in the fourth quarter, but said it would suspend its dividend.
Apple's results also weighed on Asian markets, which ended mostly lower despite preliminary data showing manufacturing activity in China accelerated in January. China's Shanghai Composite fell 0.8%. But Japan's Nikkei Stock Average rose 1.3%, bouncing from a slide in the previous session, as a weakening in the yen boosted exporters.
The dollar eased against the euro, but shot up against the yen as investors took a cue from a warning by Japan's top currency official against the currency's rise in an interview with The Wall Street Journal.
Crude-oil futures for March delivery rebounded from a steep Wednesday decline, gaining 0.8% to settle at $95.95 a barrel. Front-month gold futures for January delivery lost 1% to $1,669.50 a troy ounce. Yields on the benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury bond rose to 1.842% as prices fell.
In other corporate news, Netflix (NFLX)
McCormick Co. declined after the spice company's fourth-quarter results missed analyst expectations, and it provided an underwhelming outlook for the first quarter.
Swift Transportation (SWFT)
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