NATIONAL

Stocks closed modestly lower Wednesday as the latest batch of upbeat economic data made investors uneasy about more interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve.


According to preliminary calculations, the Dow fell 16.17, or 0.14 percent, to 11,400.28, after losing as much as 54 points intraday. On Tuesday, the Dow finished at 11,416.45, its best close since Jan. 19, 2000. The Standard & Poor's 500 index slid 5.36, or 0.41 percent, to 1,307.85, and the Nasdaq composite index dropped 5.87, or 0.25 percent to 2,303.97.


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IMPCO Technologies Inc. grew 13 percent to $8.29. Crown Media Holdings Inc. gained 9 percent to $3.99. Guess? Inc. rose 8 percent to $44.67. EMAK Worldwide Inc. was up 6 percent to $7.45. DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc., which reported earnings after the market close Tuesday, gained 5 percent to $27.37. Homestore Inc., which reported earnings after the market close Tuesday, rose 4 percent to $6.18. CB Richard Ellis Group Inc., which reported earnings after the market close Tuesday, rose 3 percent to $86.97.

Health Net Inc. fell 6 percent to $37.35. Staar Surgical Co., which reported earnings after the market close Tuesday, fell 1.2 percent to $9. Macerich Co., which said it bought 11 department-store buildings from Federated Department Stores Inc. was down 0.31 percent to $71.59.

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