Stocks on Wall Street Trade Mixed

The blue-chip indices are slightly lower, while tech shares advance.
Author:
Publish date:

Updated from 9:38 a.m. EDT

Stocks in New York were narrowly mixed Monday morning as traders continued searching for direction following an uneven showing for the major averages last week.

The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was down 30 points at 12,277, and the

S&P 500

was losing 1 point at 1359. The

Nasdaq

was better by 16 points at 2470.

Last week, the major averages had a mixed showing. The Dow gained 0.8% to end at 12,307.35, while the S&P 500 finished less than a point lower at 1360.03. The Nasdaq declined about 0.8% to 2454.50.

As the new day began, investors learned that Martin Sullivan is out as CEO of

American International Group

(AIG) - Get Report

and will be replaced by AIG's chairman, Robert Willumstad. Stephen Bollenbach, an AIG director and a former CEO of Hilton Hotels, was named lead director.

The insurance giant's board had held a special meeting this weekend to consider Sullivan's fate.

Meanwhile,

Lehman Brothers

(LEH)

, which last week ousted its chief financial officer and chief operating officer, posted a $2.8 billion second-quarter loss, matching its recent warning, owing to additional writedowns, new trading losses and bad hedges.

Also in focus were three Dow components who received analyst downgrades.

GE

(GE) - Get Report

was cut to neutral from overweight at JPMorgan, while

AT&T

(T) - Get Report

and

Verizon

(VZ) - Get Report

were lowered to neutral from buy at UBS.

On the positive side, Citigroup lifted its price targets on a series of agriculture stocks --

Agrium

(AGU)

,

Mosaic

(MOS) - Get Report

,

Potash

(POT)

,

CF Industries

(CF) - Get Report

and

Terra Industries

(TRA)

.

Elsewhere, the staff of the Federal Communications Commission has reportedly proposed that the agency finally grant clearance to the merger of

XM Satellite Radio

(XMSR)

and

Sirius Satellite Radio

(SIRI) - Get Report

, which would bring to a close a long regulatory review of the deal.

On the commodities side, oil was up $2.84 at $137.70 a barrel, despite word that Saudi Arabia may boost production next month to about 9.7 million barrels a day.

Earlier, crude reached an all-time high just short of $140. Gold was rising $17.30 to $890.40 an ounce.

The dollar was for the most part weaker, but it rose against the yen. Treasury prices were little changed. The 10-year note was up 1/32, yielding 4.25%, and the 30-year bond was down 6/32, yielding 4.80%.

As for the day's economic news, the

Federal Reserve

Bank of New York said its economic index for June fell to negative 8.7 from minus 3.2 in May, indicating a continuing contraction. Economists were looking for a reading of negative 2.

This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.com.