The markets opened mixed with the Dow slipping 5 points to 13,192 while Nasdaq added 3 points to 3123 as durable goods orders rose less than expected in February.
On the upside
The U. S. Patent and Trademark Office granted Vermillion (Nasdaq: VRML) a patent for the use of Protein C Inhibitor in ovarian cancer tests.
On the downside
Investors locked in profits on Arena Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: ARNA), whose stock price climbed the last two days after announcing that European regulators accepted the marketing application for its weight loss treatment Lorcaserin.
Profit taking sank shares of Affymax (Nasdaq: AFFY).
In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 10 to 9 on the NYSE while advancers were on par with decliners on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks held steady at 839.