US stocks end mixed after heavy sell-off

New York, Jan 6 (IANS) The US stocks closed mixed after wavering between small gains and losses on Tuesday, as Wall Street attempted to recover from Monday’s plunge amid falling oil prices.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 9.72 points, or 0.06 percent, to 17,158.66. The S&P 500 rose 4.05 points, or 0.20 percent, to 2,016.71. The Nasdaq Composite Index fell 11.66 points, or 0.24 percent, to 4,891.43, Xinhua news agency reported.

Oil prices continued to slide on Tuesday despite rising tensions in the Middle East, with both the US oil and Brent crude prices dropping more than 2 percent, as the US dollar strengthened. Crude prices had witnessed big swings lately and traded near multi-year lows.

Saudi Arabia on Sunday cut off diplomatic ties with Iran after angry protesters stormed its embassy in Tehran, the capital of Iran, to protest against Saudi’s execution of prominent Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr.

Analysts said the heightened geopolitical tensions sent traders scurrying from stocks into safe haven assets.

There are no major economic data due to be out on Tuesday. Traders were looking to the key December employment report scheduled to release on Friday, the first jobs report since the US Federal Reserve’s mid-December decision to raise its interest rates.

The US stocks slumped on Monday, the first trading day of 2016, as global market rout and geopolitical tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia rattled the nerves of investors.

Overseas, Chinese stocks managed to end the day with just a slight loss after a heavy plunge in the afternoon session Tuesday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index going down 0.26 percent to close at 3,287.71 points.

European equities rebounded mildly Tuesday following previous session’s sharp decline, with British benchmark FTSE 100 Index rising 0.72 percent.

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