Updated from 4:10 p.m. ESTStocks closed mixed Wednesday, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average made its way back above 11,000, but tech shares lagged. The Dow used an afternoon surge to finish higher by 25.05 points, or 0.23%, at 11,005.74. The S&P 500 rose 2.59 points, or 0.2%, to 1278.47, and the Nasdaq Composite fell for the fifth straight session, slipping 0.92 points, or 0.04%, to 2267.46. "We had a few days of correction, but today oil fell and the bond yields were mostly unchanged, which helped us," said Al Goldman, chief market strategist with AG Edwards. "We've been very volatile and the market might be telling us it is tired of going down. If we don't get any shocks the rest of the week, the money from the sidelines may come back now that we've weathered these storms." About 1.77 billion shares changed hands on the New York Stock Exchange, and volume on the Nasdaq was 2.13 billion shares. Advancing shares matched declining issues. The 10-year Treasury bond was down 1/32 in price to yield 4.73% and is now 1 basis point higher than the yield of the two-year note. At the start of last week, the yield curve had been inverted by as many as 13 points. The dollar rose against the yen and fell against the euro. "We've got more ongoing focus on the bond yields," said Art Hogan, chief market analyst with Jefferies. "We've been in lockstep with it all week, and today
Oil fell hard after OPEC ministers voted to forgo a cut in production during their meeting in Vienna. In Nymex floor trading, April crude fell $1.56 to close at $60.02 a barrel, a three-week low. Also, the Energy Department released its weekly inventory figures. Crude stocks had a build of 6.8 million barrels last week, much higher than analysts expected. Meanwhile, gas inventories fell by 1.1 million barrels and distillate inventories were down 2.7 million barrels. Both were great-than-expected declines. Despite the decline in crude, the Philadelphia Oil Service Sector index rose 0.1% and the Amex Oil index tacked on 0.2%. Elsewhere, the Philadelphia Semiconductor Sector index was off 0.6%, and the Philadelphia Housing Sector index fell 0.2%. Google ( GOOG) finished lower after saying it had inadvertently released certain financial notes on the Web in conjunction with its analyst day meeting last week. The notes, which Google claims are dated, pegged next year's advertising revenue at $9.5 billion, a figure that is roughly in line with Wall Street expectations. The mistaken disclosure is a fairly sensational embarrassment for Google, which makes a policy of not issuing revenue guidance. Wednesday morning, Goldman Sachs cut $10 from its price target on Google, lowering it to $490. The shares dropped $10.57, or 2.9%, to close at $353.88. Take-Two Interactive ( TTWO) reported a wide first-quarter loss on a 47% decline in sales. The video-game company lost $29.1 million, or 41 cents a share, compared with net income of $55.2 million, or 79 cents a share, a year ago. Take-Two doesn't expect to return to profitability until the fourth quarter of the current fiscal year. Shares surged $1.66, or 11.2%, to $16.51. Pixar ( PIXR), which is in the process of being acquired by Disney ( DIS), posted lower fourth-quarter earnings that still beat expectations. In the quarter ended Dec. 31, Pixar made $30.9 million, or 25 cents per share, on revenue of $55.6 million. That compared with earnings of $55.2 million, or 45 cents per share, on revenue of $108.9 million, a year ago. Pixar rose 2 cents, or 0.1%, to $64.05.
Computer reseller Tech Data ( TECD) said fourth-quarter earnings from continuing operations fell from a year ago, as special items fudged the comparison. Stripping out items, earnings of 70 cents a share were better than expected. But Tech Data also lowered guidance for the first quarter. Tech Data tumbled $4.55, or 11.1%, to $36.42. Dow component McDonald's ( MCD) said same-store sales rose 4.7% in February, with U.S. sales up 3.6% and European sales rising 5.4%. The stock gained 4 cents, or 0.1%, to $34.68. Shares of AT&T ( T) finished higher after Morgan Stanley upgraded the telecom giant to overweight from equal weight, citing valuation. The firm also raised its stock price target to $31 from $26. AT&T, which announced the acquisition of BellSouth ( BLS) Sunday, tacked on 26 cents, or 1%, to $26.79. Citigroup upgraded retailers Urban Outfitters ( URBN) and Limited Brands ( LTD) to buy from hold. The firm believes that Urban Outfitters' fundamentals remain solid, while Limited is seen as having better product execution. Urban Outfitters was up 62 cents, or 2.5%, to close at $25.41. Limited rose 41 cents, or 1.8%, to $23.42. Overseas markets were lower, with London's FTSE 100 down 0.8% to 5812 and Germany's Xetra DAX down 1.2% to 5673. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei fell 0.6% overnight to 15,627, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost 0.7% to 15,493.