US Stock Markets Start Mixed

US Stock Markets Start Mixed

NEW YORK (AP) -- Major U.S. indexes are mixed early Thursday following modest losses the day before. Energy companies are making the biggest gains as the price of oil jumps and companies that pay big dividends are rising as bond yields slip. Technology and industrial companies are taking small losses.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average picked up 15 points, or 0.1 percent, to 20,790 as of 10 a.m. Eastern time. The blue-chip index has risen for nine consecutive days. The Standard & Poor's 500 index was down a fraction at 2,362. The Nasdaq composite lost 19 points, or 0.3 percent, to 5,841 as technology companies declined. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks fell 3 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,400.

Stocks finished mostly lower on Wednesday. The Dow is at an all-time high and other indexes remain near all-time highs.

FAIR AND SQUARE: Payments processor Square jumped after it reported a larger profit than analysts expected. Wall Street was also pleased with the company's forecasts for 2017. Square stock rose $1.83, or 12.2 percent, to $16.87 and reached an all-time high. The company went public in November 2015.

A BAD FIT: L Brands, the owner of Victoria's Secret and Bath & Body Works, tumbled after it said sales in February have been weak, especially at Victoria's Secret. The company decided to stop selling swimwear last year and said sales at older stores have dropped sharply this month. The stock gave up $9.05, or 12.6 percent, to $49.08.

PC POWER: HP Inc. blew past analyst estimates in the fourth quarter thanks to a 10-percent jump in revenue from personal computers. The company said Notebook sales jumped, which made up for lower printer revenue and flat desktop sales. The stock added $1.03, or 6.4 percent, to $17.24.

BONDS: Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.39 percent from 2.42 percent.

Income-seeking investors bought shares of utilities, real estate investment trusts, and other companies that tend to pay large dividends. FirstEnergy picked up 54 cents, or 1.8 percent, to $31.33 while Realty Income gained 99 cents, or 1.6 percent, to $62.13.

RECALL WOES: Medical device maker Boston Scientific sank after it said it will take all of its Lotus Valve devices off the market and from clinical testing sites because of a manufacturing problem with the heart valve device. Last year the company announced a similar problem with a related product, its Lotus Edge Valve System. Boston Scientific stock lost $1.13, or 4.5 percent, to $24.03.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude oil futures rebounded, rising $1.05, or 2 percent, to $54.64 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the standard for pricing international oils, rose $1.11, or 2 percent, to $57.15 a barrel in London. Chevron rose $1.27, or 1.2 percent, to $111.65 and Marathon Oil advanced 39 cents, or 2.5 percent, to $16.15.

CURRENCIES: The dollar dipped to 112.76 yen from 113.12 yen. The euro rose to $1.0585 from $1.0568.

OVERSEAS: Britain's FTSE 100 index was down 0.1 percent while Germany's DAX fell 0.2 percent. The French CAC 40 traded 0.1 percent higher. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 lost less than 0.1 percent and the Kospi of South Korea finished 0.1 percent higher. Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 0.4 percent.

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