NEW YORK, Feb. 12 (Xinhua) -- The U.S. stocks closed mixed on Tuesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average closing over 14,000 again in February, as investors were awaiting U.S. President Barack Obama's State of the Union address which is expected to focus on the economy.
Obama is scheduled to begin his speech at 9 p.m. EST Tuesday ( 0200 GMT). Jobs and economic growth are broadly considered as his main themes.
The main stock indices opened nearly flat, but went higher afterwards, bolstered by strong equity markets in Asia on Monday despite the nuclear test of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK). The Chinese stock market remained closed for the Lunar New Year.
European stock markets were generally higher on Monday, adding momentum for the U.S. market.
The recent strength of the euro and its possible impact on the struggling economies in Europe were being debated at a meeting of European finance ministers Tuesday.
On the economic front, the U.S. government took in a surplus of 2.9 billion dollars in January, the first monthly surplus since April, thanks to higher social security taxes, the Treasury Department said Tuesday.
In corporate earnings news, shares of Avon Products jumped 20. 43 percent to 20.81 dollars after the cosmetics manufacturer posted better-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings.
Shares of Fossil and Michael Kors climbed 2.97 percent and 8.77 percent respectively, after both of them posted strong quarterly earnings, boosting consumer discretionary stocks.
Coca-Cola shares inched down 2.72 percent to 37.56 dollars after the world's largest soft drink maker reported a mixed fourth- quarter earnings. The beverage producer beat market on earnings by a penny, but its revenue fell short of market estimates.
Apple shares gave up 2.51 percent to 467.90 dollars after Tim Cook, the company's chief executive officer, said the company would evaluate all options about enhancing returns to shareholders.
The tech-rich Nasdaq Composite index was weighed by Apple, its biggest component.
Shares of Comcast leapt in after-hours trading after the company said it had agreed to acquire General Electric's remaining 49 percent stake in NBCUniversal for about 16.7 billion dollars. GE shares also surged on the news.
The Dow edged up 47.46 points, or 0.34 percent, to 14,018.70. The Standard & Poor's 500-stock Index rose 2.42 points, or 0.16 percent, to 1,519.43. The Nasdaq fell 5.51 points, or 0.17 percent, to 3,186.49.
The U.S. dollar traded mixed against major currencies on Tuesday after the Group of Seven issued a statement reaffirming the commitment to market determined exchange rates.
Light, sweet crude for March delivery gained 0.49 percent to settle at 97.51 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange Tuesday after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said in a report that the world's demand for oil would be more than previously expected.
Brent crude for March delivery also advanced and last traded above 118 dollars a barrel.
Gold future for April delivery on the COME of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose 0.03 percent to settle at 1,649.6 dollars per ounce.