Stocks end flat on quiet trading day

Trader Luke Scanlon works on the floor of Trader Luke Scanlon works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014. Photo Credit: AP / Richard Drew

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The stock market ended up more or less where it began Monday in a quiet day for investors who had little economic data or company earnings to react to.

Analysts said the market is likely to remain in a holding pattern until traders hear this week from Janet Yellen in her first testimony before Congress since becoming head of the Federal Reserve.

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After spending most of the day lower, the Dow Jones industrial average turned slightly higher in late trading and closed up 7.71 points at 15,801.79.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 0.16 percent to 1,799.84, and the Nasdaq composite rose 0.54 percent to 4,148.17.

Yellen, who started her term as head of the central bank this month, is scheduled to testify before Congress today and Wednesday. Her comments will be closely watched, especially after recent disappointing economic news and the Fed's decision to further reduce on its monthly bond purchases.

Despite recent volatility in the market, investors believe Yellen will likely continue her predecessor's plan to continue winding down the Fed's economic stimulus program. -- AP

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