After seeing considerable weakness in morning trading on Monday, stocks staged a notable recovery attempt over the course of the afternoon. The major averages moved well off their worst levels of the day, eventually ending the session mixed.
The early weakness came as traders cashed in on recent gains amid some uncertainty about the impending earnings season, with financial giants Citigroup (C), JP Morgan (JPM), and Goldman Sachs (GS) among the companies that are due to release their quarterly results this week.
Boeing (BA) contributed to the anxiety about the outlook for earnings, with the aerospace giant saying that its first quarter earnings would be negatively impacted by decisions to reduce airplane production as well as unfavorable price escalation.
Nonetheless, the late day recovery was due in part to news that the Obama administration plans to ease certain restrictions on transactions with Cuba, including allowing U.S. telecom companies to apply for licenses in the island nation.
Some buying interest was also generated by an announcement that President Barack Obama will deliver a major speech on the economy at Georgetown University on Tuesday.
While the major averages all moved into positive territory in late day trading, the Dow slipped back into the red going into the close. The Dow closed down 25.57 points or 0.3 percent at 8,057.81, while the Nasdaq closed up 0.77 points or 0.1 percent at 1,653.31 and the S&P 500 closed up 2.17 points or 0.3 percent at 858.73.
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