Stocks Close Flat; Investors Cheer Deal News
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Major U.S. stock averages were little changed Thursday following an early selloff, as a number of high-profile corporate deals and better-than-expected jobs data bolstered risk appetite despite a stronger dollar and sour economic news from Europe and Japan.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 10 points, or 0.1%, to 13,973.
Cisco beat Wall Street's second-quarter earnings and revenue estimates. However, shares dropped 0.7%.
Most sectors in the broader market traded higher. The sharpest decliners included utilities and consumer cyclicals. Consumer non-cyclicals, conglomerates and basic materials were the largest gainers.
Volumes totaled 3.72 billion shares on the New York Stock Exchange and 1.92 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers edged decliners by four issues on the Big Board, and by a 1.2-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
In corporate deal news, H.J. Heinz(HNZ) shares surged 20% as the company agreed to be acquired by Berkshire Hathaway(BRK.A) and Brazil's 3G Capital in a transaction valued at $28 billion. Berkshire shares closed up 1%.
Cardinal Health(CAH) shares increased 1.2% as the health-care-services company announced plans to acquire privately held medical-supplies provider AssuraMed for $2.07 billion.
Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Rockwell Global Capital, said the deals are a good sign as far as the market is concerned.