Exxon, Alcoa, Merck: Dow Midday Movers

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stocks were mixed midday Monday as China showed signs of slowing economic growth.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose to 12,956 points, up 24.60, or 0.19%. Leading the Dow slightly higher Monday were Exxon Mobil ( XOM), Alcoa ( AA).

Shares of Exxon rose to $85.42, up $1.11, or 1.3%, as the oil company agreed to pay for work on the West Qurna-1 oil field, according to Reuters.

TheStreet Ratings gives Exxon a B+ grade with a Buy rating and a $100.94 price target.

Alcoa was gaining to $9.92, up 11 cents, or 1.1%, after the company announced it had received a $2.1 million contract from the U.S. Navy to minimize manufacturing costs on ships that would save the military branch some $200 million.

TheStreet Ratings gives Alcoa a C grade with a Hold rating.

Shares of Merck had ticked slightly upwards to $37.95, up 35 cents, or 0.93%, as the pharmaceutical company reiterated last week its 2012 fiscal-year earnings guidance between $3.75 and $3.85 a share.

TheStreet Ratings gives Merck an Merck an A- grade with a Buy rating and a $43.19 price target.

-- Written by Joe Deaux in New York.

>Contact by Email.

>Follow Joe Deaux on Twitter. Subscribe on Facebook.

If you liked this article you might like

These Stocks Pay You to Own Them

Dow, S&P 500 Set New Records as Fed Moves to Unwind Balance Sheet

Stocks In Negative Territory as Chances for December Hike Surge

Energy Stocks Lead a Neutral Market Even After Oil Inventories Spike

Energy Takes a Backseat as Crude Oil Stabilizes Under $50