April 21st, 2010
08:13 PM ET

Stocks seesaw, oil prices fall

A look at highlights from the day's business news:

Stocks seesaw on mixed earnings

Stocks ended mixed after a choppy session Wednesday, as differing profit reports from Apple and Yahoo weighed on the tech sector and investors remained wary following strong quarterly reports from Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo.

The Dow Jones industrial average added 8 points, or less than 0.1 percent, to end at 11,124.92. The S&P 500 index fell 1 point, or 0.1 percent, to settle at 1,205.93, and the Nasdaq composite rose 4 points, or 0.2 percent, to close at 2,504.61.  

"As we get beyond earnings, attention is going to turn right back to the housing and job markets," said Dave Hinnenkamp, chief executive of KDV Wealth Management. "The downturn has left a really big scar, and investors who got burned will be cautious for some time.

Treasurys rise on Greek debt concerns

Treasurys rose Wednesday as concerns about Greek debt sparked demand for U.S. debt.    

What prices are doing: The benchmark 10-year note climbed 16/32 to 99-2/32, pushing the yield down to 3.75 percent from 3.80 percent late Monday. Bond prices and yields move in opposite directions.

The 30-year bond rose 1 point to 100-5/32, and its yield fell to 4.62 percent. The 2-year note edged higher 1/32 to 100 with a 1.01 percent yield. The 5-year note increased 7/32 to 100-1/32 with a yield of 2.50 percent.   

What's moving the market: Investors dumped Greek debt and swapped it for the safety of U.S. Treasurys amid fear that the debt-challenged country will default. The spread between Greek and German debt rose to a 12-year high, with the yield on the 10-year Greek debt at 8.4 percent.

Oil prices fall

Oil prices fell amid choppy trading on Wednesday after the government's inventory report dimmed trader hopes that demand is finally rebounding.

What prices are doing: Crude for June delivery dipped 17 cents to settle at $83.68 a barrel.

Prices had meandered within a tight range for weeks before the fraud charges against Goldman Sachs  helped send them down 3 percent on Friday. They were as low as $81.45 a barrel before a spate of strong earnings reports helped push prices back up to levels seen earlier last week.

Though down nearly 2 percent on the week, oil prices are over 80 percent higher than they were at this time last year.

What's moving the market: Prices for crude oil fluctuated between gains and losses most of the day, but settled lower after an unexpected jump in inventory dimmed hopes for a rebound in demand.

Dollar gains vs. euro, slips vs. yen

The dollar was mixed Wednesday as investors soaked up strong financial results from key U.S. corporations.

The dollar was up 0.3 percent versus the euro to $1.3397 as investors remained nervous about the fiscal challenges facing Greece. It slid 0.3 percent against the U.K. pound to $1.5043 and fell 0.2 percent versus the Japanese yen to ¥93.065.

With no economic reports on the agenda, investors focused their attention on quarterly financial results from a slew of major corporations.

CNNMoney.com reporters Chavon Sutton, Hibah Yousuf and Julianne Pepitone contributed to this report.


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