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Markets Right Now: Early gain for stocks fades at close

Posted March 17

— The latest on developments in financial markets (All times local):

4:00 p.m.

U.S. stocks ended little changed after a day of meandering between small gains and losses.

Income-seeking investors bought dividend-paying utilities and phone companies Friday as bond yields fell. Ameren rose 1.3 percent.

Health care stocks sank. Biotech drugmaker Amgen gave up 6.6 percent after disappointing results from a study of its cholesterol drug Repatha.

Financial stocks lost ground as yields fell, cutting into lending profits. Capital One Financial fell 2.2 percent.

On the New York Stock Exchange, more stocks rose than fell.

Adobe Systems rose 4 percent and Tiffany rose 2.7 percent. Both posted strong quarterly results.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 3 points or 0.1 percent to 2,378.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 20 points, or 0.1 percent, to 20,915. The Nasdaq composite was unchanged at 5,901.

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12:00 p.m.

U.S. stocks gave up an early gain and were slightly lower in midday trading as health care stocks slid.

Biotechnology company Amgen gave up 6.7 percent after releasing disappointing results from a study of its cholesterol drug Repatha.

Financial stocks fell as bond yields moved lower, cutting into their lending profits. Capital One Financial fell 2 percent and Morgan Stanley fell 1.8 percent.

Adobe Systems jumped 5.4 percent after reporting strong first-quarter earnings. Tiffany & Co. rose 2.9 percent on its own solid earnings report.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 2 points or 0.1 percent to 2,379.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 15 points, or 0.1 percent, to 20,917. The Nasdaq fell 4 points or 0.1 percent to 5,896.

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9:35 a.m.

Stocks are opening modestly higher on Wall Street with the biggest gains going to energy and materials companies.

Tiffany jumped 3.6 percent early Friday after reporting better earnings and revenue than analysts expected thanks to strong demand in China and Japan.

Adobe rose 6 percent on strong fiscal first quarter earnings.

Amgen fell more than 6 percent following a disappointing study of its cholesterol drug Repatha.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 1 point to 2,383.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 12 points to 20,947. The Nasdaq fell 1 point to 5,899.

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