Stocks finished narrowly mixed in lethargic trading as an early jump on a benign jobless claims data faded away on a stronger U.S. dollar and later on news that Democrats in the House voted against considering the tax cut extensions that President Obama negotiated with Republicans.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 2.42 points, or 0.02 percent, to 11370.06. The S&P 500 rose 4.72 points, or 0.38 percent, to 1233.00; and the Nasdaq gained 7.51 points, or 0.29 percent, to 2616.67.
The number of people filing for initial jobless claims fell 17,000 to 421,000 in the latest week, from 436,000 the previous week, the Labor Department said in its most weekly jobless claims report. Economists had expected the number to decrease to 429,000.
Separately, the Commerce Department said wholesale inventories rose 1.9% in October, following a revised 0.6% increase for September. The October gain was much larger than the 0.7% gain economists had expected.
DuPont (NYSE: DD) dropped 1.15 percent after its 2011 outlook apparently disappointed investors.
American International Group, Inc. (NYSE:AIG) surged 13.17 percent on agreement to repay Federal Reserve and exit government bailout.
SiriusXM Radio (NASDAQ: SIRI) jumped 5.70 percent after Howard Stern signed up for five years.
Bonds rose as the yield on the 10-Year Treasury Note slipped to 3.22 percent.
Oil and gold futures both rose modestly.
European/UK stock indices were mixed.