U.S. stocks finished narrowly mixed as some optimism over a proposal by President Obama on setting a five-year ban on discretionary spending was overshadowed by disappointing earnings by blue-chip companies such as 3Com (NYSE: MMM) and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ).

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.03 percent, while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq rose slightly by 0.03 and 0.06 percent, respectively. The results came on the first day of meetings for the Federal Open Market Committee and on the doorstep of the President’s State of the Union Address.

3Com fell 2.02 percent while Johnson and Johnson tumbled 1.83 percent. Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) fell 2.08 percent while Walmart (NYSE: WMT) rose 2.16 percent as options investors increased their trading activity on put options based on Walmart stock.

Tomorrow investors await earnings reports from Abbott Labs (NYSE: ABT), Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA), Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX) , Qualcomm Inc. (QCOM) and Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX).

Additionally, the results of the FOMC meetings will be announced tomorrow.


Oil fell 1.79 percent due to the announcement yesterday that OPEC would increase its production, and gold fell 0.97 percent as gold traders abandoned their positions after a large volume of gold futures contracts expired on Saturday.

The 10-year bond fell slightly by 0.09 percent.