U.S. Stocks Little Changed After Jobs Data; Utility Shares Gain

Digital Risk's Taylor: 2017 Is Year of Homebuilder

U.S. stocks ended the session little changed as filings for U.S. unemployment benefits fell for a third week in the last four and a rally in utility shares offset losses in financial companies.

The S&P 500 Index was little changed at 2,249.26 at 4 p.m. in New York after declining the most since October on Wednesday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 13.9 points to 19,819.78, falling further from the 20,000 milestone it’s hovered near this month.

  • Dividend-payers continue to lead market in the past five days
  • Utility shares gain 1.3%; group is up 5.2% this month
  • Real estate stocks add 0.9%
  • Financial and tech stocks lag, down 0.7% and less than 0.1%, respectively
  • Jobless claims declined by 10,000 to 265,000 in the week ended Dec. 24 from a six-month high in the prior period, Labor Department data showed Thursday
  • The VIX rose for a fifth day, jumping 3.2% in its longest streak of increases since early November
  • The S&P 500 is on track for the first yearly advance since 2014, up 10% for the year
  • EARNINGS: no earnings on calendar

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