Stocks inched lower on Monday as crude oil prices rebounded late in the session and a profit warning from Ford Motor Co. weighed on the auto sector.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 12.78, or 0.1 percent, to close at 10,448.56. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 0.01, essentially flat, at 1,181.21. The Nasdaq Composite Index lost 7.23, or 0.4 percent, to 1,992.12.
While investors initially welcomed reports that OPEC plans another production increase in May to meet steady demand, crude futures eventually climbed higher, breaking a five-session streak of lower prices. A barrel of light crude settled 39 cents higher at $53.71 on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Ford weighed on the markets as the automaker said higher expenses and a difficult market would cut into its quarterly and full-year profits. Two brokerages downgraded the company's stock, and Standard & Poor's also cut its rating on Ford's debt. Ford tumbled 59 cents, or 5.4 percent, to $10.44 on the news.
Among local companies, shares of Computer Sciences Corp. gained 4.1 percent to close at $47.47 after the El Segundo-based information technology services giant said Friday after market close that it would sell a health care software business to DST Systems Inc. in exchange for a large stake of its own shares currently held by DST. Under terms of the deal, Computer Sciences said it will get back about 7.1 million of its own shares that are held by a DST unit. The stake equals roughly 3.8 percent of Computer Sciences' outstanding shares.
DirecTV Group Inc. rose 3.8 percent to $15.06 after Barron's reported that the El Segundo-based satellite-television provider is poised to start generating cash after years of losses. Barron's cited DirecTV Chief Executive Chase Carey.
And Alexandria Real Estate Equities Inc. went up 1.1 percent to close at $64.86 after the Pasadena-based real estate investment trust's stock was upgraded to "buy" from "hold" by analyst Jonathan Litt at Smith Barney. The 12-month price target was set at $75 per share.
For reprint and licensing requests for this article, CLICK HERE.