Dow back in the black for the year

American flags fly in front of the New

American flags fly in front of the New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street on Feb. 10, 2011. (Credit: AP / Mark Lennihan)

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A modest gain for the stock market on Wednesday tugged the Dow Jones industrial average back into the black for the year as investors set aside concerns about Ukraine, Iraq and earnings, at least for a day.

At the close on Wall Street, the Dow was up 91.3 points, nearly 0.6 percent, at 16,651.8. The Standard & Poor's 500 index gained nearly 13 points, nearly 0.7 percent, to 1,946.7. The Nasdaq composite added about 45 points, 1 percent, to close at 4,434.1.

The gains were broad but thin, despite a mixed batch of economic and corporate news. Three companies rose for every one that fell on the New York Stock Exchange, and all 10 sectors in the S&P 500 ended higher.

"This is a very resilient market," said Uri Landesman, president of Platinum Partners, a hedge fund in Manhattan.

Markets have turned choppy in recent weeks as investors have weighed a host of concerns. At times, worries over global conflicts and Europe's economy have overshadowed signs of steady growth in the U.S. economy and rising corporate profits. Landesman pointed to plenty of reasons for traders to ditch stocks this summer, including high prices.

"We're getting through the summer and the market is still pretty close to its high," he said. "It shows you the trend is still upward."

Amazon, the online retail giant, unveiled a new payment device for mobile phones. The device, called Amazon Local Register, is aimed at helping small businesses accept payments through smartphones and tablets. Amazon's stock gained $6.96, about 2 percent, to $326.28.

Of the handful of companies reporting quarterly results on Wednesday, a few well-known names warned of sliding sales and shrinking profits. Macy's turned in results that fell short of Wall Street's forecasts. The department store chain also cut its full-year outlook for sales, saying it couldn't make up from a shortfall at the start of the year when winter storms kept shoppers at home. The company's stock dropped $3.29, or 6 percent, to $56.47.

Deere & Co., the country's largest maker of farm equipment, said weak sales will likely cut into its earnings for the entire year. Deere dropped $1.99, about 2 percent, to $84.49.

King Digital Entertainment, maker of the Candy Crush Saga video game, plunged 23 percent. The company reported second-quarter sales that came up short of estimates and also cut its full-year earnings forecast. King's stock lost $4.21 to $13.99.

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