U.S. stocks mostly continued on the same directionless path forged during morning trading, as investors await Friday’s inauguration ceremony and parse through newly released data. Advancing and declining shares were roughly equal throughout the day, while half of the major market sectors reported gains at the end of the session. The indexes were mixed, and largely range-bound, further suggesting a holding pattern by investors before Donald. J. Trump takes office.
The Federal Reserve provided a look at the nation's economy at the turn of the year and indicated that the upturn was proceeding at a modest pace on average across most regions of the country. Better manufacturing metrics, generally decent retailing numbers (with the exception of a disappointing holiday season), and improving employment data underscored the generally decent outlook in place as we begin 2017.
With an improving operating climate, investors were okay with Goldman Sachs’ fourth-quarter revenues and earnings. Share activity, though, was somewhat muted.