U.S. Stocks Swing Between Gains and Losses

By Riva Gold and Kenan MachadoFeaturesDow Jones Newswires

U.S. stocks trade in narrow range

-- Turkish lira sinks on political tensions

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-- Chinese stocks rise after holiday

U.S. stocks stalled Monday, as gains in shares of energy companies failed to offset losses elsewhere.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 7 points, or less than 0.1%, to 22766 shortly after the opening bell. The S&P 500 fell less than 0.1% and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.1%.

Stocks hit several fresh records last week, lifted by mostly upbeat data showing the U.S. economy remains on firm footing. Investors and analysts also looked past a report showing the labor market lost jobs for the first time in seven years, with some reasoning that third-quarter economic data could be softer than initially anticipated after damage from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

As long as corporate earnings continue to point to solid growth, U.S. stocks should keep chugging higher, analysts said. Should there be a 3% correction or so, "we're going to tell clients to treat that as manna from heaven," said Phil Orlando, chief equity strategist at Federated Investors.

Energy shares in the S&P 500 rose 0.4% on Monday, among the best performers in the broad index for the day. Cimarex Energy, National Oilwell Varco and Occidental Petroleum added more than 0.5% apiece.

U.S. crude rose 0.7% to $49.67 a barrel, rebounding after posting its largest one-week decline since May.

Elsewhere, the Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.2%, lifted by gains in shares of utilities companies.

Over the weekend, hundreds of thousands of Spaniards gathered in Barcelona to decry Catalonia's secessionist push, while some Spanish companies said they would move their headquarters out of Catalonia to mitigate risks associated with potential Catalan independence.

The crisis in Catalonia could affect national politics and lead to strikes and acts of violence that worsen the social and economic climate, said strategists at UBS. But the impact on markets should remain contained, they added, given the European Central Bank's plans for its bond-purchase program will likely remain the most important performance driver of European government bonds over the next six months.

Elsewhere Monday, political worries weighed on the Turkish lira, which was last down 2.7% against the dollar as tensions escalated between the U.S. and Turkey. The two countries on Sunday stopped issuing nonimmigrant visas to each others' citizens after Turkey last week arrested a Turkish employee at the U.S. Consulate in Istanbul.

In Asia, the Shanghai Composite rose 0.8%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 0.5%, weighed down by declines in Chinese property-developer stocks.

Markets in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan were closed for holidays.

--Akane Otani contributed to this article.

Write to Riva Gold at riva.gold@wsj.com and Kenan Machado at kenan.machado@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 09, 2017 10:13 ET (14:13 GMT)