After last year's big party in the stock market, 2014 is starting off with a nagging hangover.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index edged a fraction of a point lower Friday, beginning a year with a two-day losing streak for the first time since 2005.
While few analysts expect 2014 to produce gains comparable to last year's advance of nearly 30 percent, many foresee a moderate increase as the economy continues to improve and investors move funds out of bonds and into stocks, which are generating much bigger returns.
The S&P 500 index fell 0.03 percent to 1,831.37 and was 0.5 percent lower for the week.
The Dow Jones industrial average gained 28.64 points to 16,469.99. The Nasdaq composite fell 0.27 percent to 4,131.91.
General Motors was among the stocks that posted the biggest losses in the S&P 500. The automaker fell $1.38, or 3.37 percent, to $39.57 after reporting a U.S. sales slump of more than 6 percent in December.
Energy companies also have started the year with declines as the price of oil falls. On Friday, oil extended a weeklong skid by falling 1.6 percent to $93.96 a barrel.
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke Friday predicted stronger growth in 2014.-- AP