NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stocks finished mixed, but well off their lows Monday after Sen. Christopher Dodd (D., Conn.), chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, announced new financial regulatory proposals to rein in Wall Street, and morning factory data revealed some encouraging signs in the sector. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 17 points, or 0.2%, to 10,642. The S&P 500 edged up nearly a point, or 0.1%, to 1151, though the Nasdaq slipped 5 points, or 0.2%, to 2362. >>TheStreet's Market Sentiment Poll Results Investors appeared to be showing caution ahead of Tuesday's meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee as they question whether there will be any changes made to monetary policy. Market observers got a glimpse of Senator Dodd's newest financial regulatory reform measures in the afternoon. The senator's speech laid out a series of proposals, including the creation of an independent consumer watchdog agency within the Federal Reserve and a systemic risk council, all while vowing that Congress would adopt financial reform sometime this year. Stocks began selling off in the morning despite some improving factory figures. Industrial production rose 0.1% in February, surpassing economists' projections that levels would remain unchanged following January's 0.9% gain. Capacity utilization ticked up by 0.2 of a percentage point to 72.7%, compared with 72.5% in January. Economists had been expecting capacity utilization of 72.3% in February. "Both industrial production and capacity utilization did come in slightly better than expected, which I think was quite constructive considering the severe weather in the Northeast in addition to recall activity from Toyota," said David Allon, senior financial professional and co-chair of the investment committee at Firstrust Financial Resources. "In light of those two factors, I think that industrial production was actually surprisingly strong, and for capacity utilization to be up with those two storms, it really speaks to the strength of the economy." Manufacturing activity in New York slowed in March, according to the
Empire State Manufacturing Survey , which came in at 22.86, from 24.91 in February. The level, however, was better than a reading of 21.45 that economists had been expecting for March. Allon attributed market weakness to comments from China Premier Wen Jiabao over the weekend indicating that the yuan will remain stable despite urging from the U.S. to loosen its exchange-rate controls. Furthering the sense of mounting tension with China were reports that Google ( GOOG) is expected to shut its Chinese-language search engine within weeks. Google's stock shed $19.35, or 3.3%, to $560.19.
The benchmark 10-year Treasury weakened 1/32, lifting the yield to 3.704%. Overseas, Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 0.6% and Japan's Nikkei gained 0.01%. The FTSE in London slipped 0.6% and the DAX in Frankfurt fell 0.7%. -- Written by Melinda Peer and Sung Moss in New York.