Stocks close mixed on holiday-shortened trading day

Stocks finished mixed during an uneventful trading day, shortened by Black Friday.

At the closing bell on Friday, the S&P 500 was down 0.03%, the Dow was up 0.45%, and the Nasdaq was down 0.52%.

The US stock market closes at 1:00 pm ET on Friday; Financial markets in the US were closed on Thursday for Thanksgiving.

Stocks ended with gains on Wednesday, the last full trading session of the week, after minutes from the Fed’s last meeting signaled a likely slowdown in the pace of rate hikes at the central bank’s December meeting.

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US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell attends a press conference in Washington, DC, the United States, November 2, 2022. On Wednesday, the US Federal Reserve implemented its fourth consecutive three-quarter increase in interest rates, amid the worst inflation in four.  decade  (Photo by Liu Jie/Xinhua via Getty Images)

US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell attends a press conference in Washington, DC, the United States, November 2, 2022. On Wednesday, the US Federal Reserve implemented its fourth consecutive three-quarter increase in interest rates, amid the worst inflation in four. decade (Photo by Liu Jie/Xinhua via Getty Images)

No major economic data or earnings reports have been released in the US

Energy markets remain the focus for investors, with WTI crude oil down about 1.5% after an earlier move higher by nearly 3% early Friday, a rebound that follows Wednesday’s slide in oil prices back toward 2022 lows.

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In overseas markets, stocks in Europe ended the sixth straight week of gains.

Investors were also reacting to news overnight that the People’s Bank of China would cut its reserve requirements for the second time this year in an effort to stimulate the economy.

After weakening earlier this week, the dollar staged a modest rally early in Friday’s trading session.

In company news, Manchester United (MANU) shares rose 13% on Friday after a 25% gain on Wednesday as reports continued to swirl about a possible sale of the English soccer club by the Glazer family, which also owns the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. .

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As U.S. investors look to the end of November and the end of a difficult year in financial markets, Yahoo Finance’s Jared Blikre writes in Friday’s Morning Brief that history suggests more positive times could be ahead for bull markets.

During the period spanning the Tuesday before Thanksgiving to the second trading day of the new year, the S&P 500 was higher 81% of the time since 1950. And in years when stocks rose during that period, the index gained 3.8%, on average .

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