Initial enthusiasm about high consumer confidence in December gave way to profit-takers. The Dow closed the session down 2 points to 12,291. Nasdaq held on to its gain rising 6 points to 2625.
On the upside
Shares of Scientific Games (Nasdaq: SGMS) surged on hopes that a U.S. Department of Justice opinion may open the way for more online gambling opportunities.
Shares of Research in Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM) continued to rise in hopes of a possible takeover of the marker of the still-popular Blackberry smartphone.
On the downside
Shares of Walgreen (NYSE: WAG) continued to lag after recent news of baby formula being pulled from its shelves despite reports that no infection-causing bacteria was found.
Gold prices rose sharply, but shares of Novagold Resources (AMEX: NG) bucked the trend.
In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 10 to 9 on the NYSE while decliners narrowly edged out advancers on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks rose 3 points to close at 751.