NEW YORK, Jan. 16 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks closed mixed after narrowly fluctuating trading Thursday, a pause from the S&P 500's record run on Wednesday, as investors were pondering tepid bank earnings results and economic data.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 64.93 points, or 0.39 percent, to 16,417.01. The S&P 500 lost 2.49 points, or 0.13 percent, to 1,845.89. The Nasdaq Composite Index inched up 3.81 points, or 0.09 percent, to 4,218.69.
Both the blue-chip Dow and the broader S&P 500 traded in negative territory amid weak bank earnings reports, while the tech- rich Nasdaq outperformed, managing to finish above flatline.
Before Thursday's opening bell, Goldman Sachs reported its net earnings in the fourth quarter of 2013, which slumped 19 percent to 2.33 billion U.S. dollars on a yearly basis, still above analysts' forecasts. Its diluted earnings per common share were 4. 60 dollars in the quarter, compared with 5.60 dollars in the year- ago period.
The bank's net revenue fell 5 percent to 8.78 billion dollars in the quarter, though its revenue still beat market expectations. The shares of the investment bank shed 2.00 percent to 175.17 dollars.
Another giant bank Citigroup reported its net income of 2.7 billion dollars, or 85 cents per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2013, compared with a profit of 1.2 billion dollars, or 38 cents a share, 12 months ago. However, Citigroup's earnings still fell short of market expectations, putting a damper on its shares which sank 4.35 percent to 52.60 dollars a share.
Shortly after the closing bell, both the Intel and American Express reported mixed earnings reports. The tech giant's shares dipped while that of the financial services corporation rose slightly in after-hour trading.
The economic data coming out in the day brought no big surprise, failing to provide direction for the market.
The U.S. Consumer Price Index for all urban consumers increased 0.3 percent in December on a seasonally adjusted basis, following a flat reading in November, said the Labor Department Thursday.
The number of Americans who initially applied for jobless benefits in the week ending Jan. 11 decreased 2,000 to 326,000, meeting market estimates, said the department in a separate report.
Among other data, U.S. builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes slipped one notch in January to 56 from 57 in the prior month, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. The CBOE Volatility Index, widely considered as a fear gauge of the market, increased 2.04 percent to 12.53.
In other markets, oil prices were little changed Thursday as investors were digesting the newly released U.S. economic data. Light, sweet crude for February delivery moved down 21 cents to settle at 93.96 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for February delivery lost 4 cents to close at 107.09 dollars a barrel.
Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rebounded modestly on Thursday, with the most active gold contract for February delivery up 1.9 dollars to settle at 1,240.2 dollars per ounce.
The U.S. dollar dipped against most major currencies on Thursday after rising for two straight sessions.
In late New York trading, the euro rose to 1.3614 dollars from 1.3602 dollars of the previous session, and the dollar bought 104. 34 yen, lower than 104.61 yen of the previous session.