U.S. stocks gave back some of their year-end gains Wednesday amid light volume due to continued weakness in the dollar and concerns over crude oil futures.
The dollar fell to its fifth straight record low against the euro and crude oil futures moved higher after the Energy Department's weekly petroleum inventory report showed a dropoff in the nation's crude reserves. Reports of explosions in the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh prompted a sharp rise as well. A barrel of light crude hit $43.70, up $1.93, on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 25.35 points, or 0.2 percent, at 10,829 while the Nasdaq Composite Index dipped 0.19 to 2,177.00 and the S & P; 500 slipped 0.09 to 1,213.45.
Among local movers, Flamemaster Corp.'s price dipped slightly after being up nearly 42 percent during trading. Earlier in the day, shares of the Sun Valley-based company surged for the second time in two weeks as investors engaged in short covering nearly one week before the 7-for-1 stock split takes effect. The stock finally came to rest at $55.30, down 1.93 percent.
Santa Fe Springs-based Reinhold Industries Inc. lost 29.5 percent, to $27.85, after it paid a special dividend of $11.75 per share. The stock had gained 7.3 percent two days earlier as investors reacted to the company receiving new orders totaling $37 million during the past month.
On the up side, Calabasas-based Ixia's stock leaped 14.6 percent to $16.93 and Sport Chalet Inc., the La Canada-based sporting goods retailer, edged up 9.9 percent to $14.34.
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