Stock Market Today: Stocks End Mixed Despite Gains in Manufacturing, Construction

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- After fluctuating between gains and losses for much of the day, U.S. stock indices ended Tuesday mixed.

Watch the video below to see how U.S. markets ended the trading day Tuesday:


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With September historically being the "worst" month of the year for stock market performance and a number of big economic headlines expected in the back half of the week, investors returned from the U.S. Labor Day weekend largely indecisive about their positioning, despite a trio of good U.S. economic reports.

The ISM manufacturing index hit a stronger-than-anticipated 59 in August, while construction spending rebounded by a more-than-forecast 1.8% in July. The Markit PMI manufacturing index, at 57.9 in August, increased to its highest level since April 2010.

Investors were not impressed. The Dow Jones Industrial Average  fell 0.18% to 17,067.56 and the S&P 500 was down 0.05% to 2,002.28. The Nasdaq was up 0.39% to 4,598.19.

Breadth was mildly negative. Twenty one of the 30 Dow components ticked lower, most noticeably Home Depot (HD) , which fell 2.02% to $91.15 on news that the home improvement company may have suffered a customer credit and debit data breach. About 1.1 issues declined for every advancer. Sector performance was mixed, with energy being the worst performer, thanks to a decline in oil majors and services companies such as Chevron (CVX) , Exxon (XOM) and Schlumberger (SLB) . The consumer discretionary sector was one of the better performers of the day after Dollar General (DG) raised its offer for Family Dollar (FDO) to $80 a share, or $9.1 billion, from $78.50 a share. Dollar General rose 0.58% to $64.36 on the report. Family Dollar was up 0.49% to $80.22. Home Depot offset some of these gains.

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