The Dow briefly turned positive on Tuesday, helped by a rise in the shares of big manufacturers including Boeing Co ,and the S&P 500 and Nasdaq pared earlier losses.

Initially, stocks had slid as investors paused after Monday's big surge that followed news of a plan to rid bank balance sheets of money-losing assets.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> gained 12.82 points, or 0.16 percent, to 7,788.68. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> dropped 0.03 point, or 0.00 percent, to 822.89. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> dropped 10.52 points, or 0.68 percent, to 1,545.25.

(Reporting by Ellis Mnyandu; Editing by Leslie Adler)