Stocks closed slightly lower on Monday, as lingering questions about Europe and corporate earnings overshadowed growing optimism about economic growth after a five-week rally.

Based on the latest available data, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 18.62 points, or 0.14 percent, at 12,843.61. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 0.72 points, or 0.05 percent, at 1,344.18. The Nasdaq Composite Index was down 3.67 points, or 0.13 percent, at 2,901.99.

(Reporting By Caroline Valetkevitch; Editing by Leslie Adler)