Wall Street Headed For A Year In The Black, Barely - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Wall Street Headed For A Year In The Black, Barely

NEW YORK (AP) – The U.S. stock market is set to end a tumultuous year more or less where it started with only the Nasdaq composit trading higher at midday Friday. The Dow Jones industrial average and the Standard & Poor's 500 index were trading lower as the afternoon began.

McDonald's (MCD) is shaping up to be the biggest winner in the Dow this year with a gain of 31%. Bank of America (BAC) is the worst, down 59%. On Friday Ford reported that its sales topped 2 million this year for the first time since 2007. Ford shares fell 0.1%.

The conventional wisdom is the more risk, the greater the potential rewards. But the opposite is proving true this year: Investors playing it safe have gained the most.

The most dull and conservative of stocks — utilities — are up 16%, the largest gain of the ten sectors in the Standard & Poor's 500. Other winning groups are consumer staples and health care companies, both up 11% in 2011.

The 30-stock Dow Jones industrial average has been the star in U.S. markets in 2011, up 6% for the year although it was slightly lower at the open Friday. click here to read more

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