April 18, 2014
Wall St ends mostly flat in thin trading
US stocks ended mostly flat today following a strong rally over the past two-weeks, with weaker-than-forecast housing data and light trading volume keeping upward momentum in check.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 25.88 points, or 0.16 percent, to end at 16,504.29, a record close. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index dipped just 0.33 of a point, or 0.02 percent, to finish at 1,841.07. The Nasdaq Composite Index declined 2.40 points, or 0.06 percent, to close at 4,154.20.
In Europe, most European stock indexes fell but stayed on track to post their biggest annual gains in four years on support from the ECB and a strengthening economic recovery.
The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares provisionally closed down 0.2 percent at 1,311.76 but was still set to post a gain of 16 percent for the year, its best annual performance since 2009.
Japanese shares ended 2013 with a flourish, up 0.7 percent - 56.7 percent for the year. Tokyo's Nikkei index has posted its strongest run-up since 1972 as aggressive government and central bank policies have driven the plunge of its currency in an effort to help exporters and stimulate domestic demand.