By Karen Langley and Caitlin Ostroff 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed unchanged for the first time in more than five years Tuesday, hovering at its all-time high.

President Trump's speech at the Economic Club of New York was expected to be the highlight of the session, but he said little new about the state of trade talks between the U.S. and China.

"They are dying to make a deal. We're the ones who are deciding whether we want to make a deal," Mr Trump said, adding the parties are close to a "phase one" agreement.

The stock market showed little reaction during the speech but pared some of its earlier gains as the afternoon progressed.

The blue chips were unchanged at Monday's all-time high of 27691.49. The index last ended flat on April 24, 2014, and was last unchanged on the trading day after a record close on Jan. 18, 1994.

The S&P 500 ended the day up 4.83 points, or 0.2%, to 3091.84, its second-highest close in history. The Nasdaq Composite gained 21.81 points, or 0.3%, to 8486.09, its 15th record close of the year.

Investors have been particularly sensitive to trade-related headlines in recent months and have pushed stocks higher lately as tensions have diffused. They have also credited the Federal Reserve's interest rate cuts for supporting stocks.

Meanwhile, the corporate earnings season was better than feared, and data on jobs and consumer spending suggest strength in the U.S. economy.

"We don't think we're out of the woods yet," said Matt Miskin, co-chief investment strategist at John Hancock Investment Management. "It does not sound like a trade deal is finalized by any means. But the Band-Aid on this all is the Fed cutting interest rates."

Investors will be watching closely Wednesday when Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell heads to Capitol Hill for two days of congressional hearings. Mr. Powell has signaled that there will be a high bar for additional rate cuts after the Fed's three rate reductions this year.

Cyclical sectors that are closely tied to the economy, such as the financial and industrial sectors, have been doing particularly well lately.

"That tells me investors are not worried about recession in 2020," said Nancy Tengler, chief investment officer of Tengler Wealth Management.

The Dow industrials traded within a range of 135 points during the session. Of the 30 stocks in the index, 16 rose on the day, with Walt Disney, Goldman Sachs and Home Depot making the largest positive point contributions. The biggest laggards were Boeing, Caterpillar and Exxon Mobil.

The index has ended the session unchanged 167 times in its history, according to Dow Jones Market Data. Tuesday marks the third time since 2000 and the 13th time since 1990.

Corporate news drove moves in individual stocks. Shares of Advance Auto Parts dropped $12.68, or 7.5%, to $156.14 after the company reported lower-than-expected third-quarter sales. Rockwell Automation climbed $18.81, or 10%, to $198.01 after the Milwaukee-based industrial technology company beat forecasts for its adjusted profit.

With more than 90% of S&P 500 companies having reported third-quarter earnings, about three-quarters have beaten expectations, slightly above the five-year average of 72%, according to FactSet. Earnings from companies that have reported have dropped 2.3% from a year earlier.

In other corporate news, shares of Portland-based brewing company Craft Brew Alliance more than doubled after Anheuser-Busch offered to buy the remaining shares of the company Monday.

The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury was 1.909%, down from 1.930% Friday. Bond markets were closed Monday. Yields fall when prices rise.

In Europe, the Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.4% and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 gained 0.5%. Stocks traded up in Asia, where the Hang Seng rose 0.5% amid ongoing pro-democracy demonstrations. The Shanghai Composite gained 0.2% and Japan's Nikkei 225 climbed 0.8%.

Write to Karen Langley at and Caitlin Ostroff at


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 12, 2019 17:30 ET (22:30 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2019 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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