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Published: Wednesday, 10/19/2011

Stocks mixed as investors weigh mixed earnings reports, jump in home construction


NEW YORK — Stocks are mixed in midday trading as investors weigh mixed corporate earnings against a surprise jump in new home construction last month.

The insurance company Travelers and other financial firms helped pull the Dow Jones industrial average higher Wednesday. Travelers rose 5 percent after reporting revenue that beat analysts' expectations.

Apple Inc. slumped 4 percent after the company's income and revenue fell short of forecasts. It was a rare miss for the company, which had jumped 31 percent this year through Tuesday. Apple blamed the shortfall on a later-than-usual release of its newest iPhone.

The Dow was up 49 points, or 0.4 percent, 11,626 at 11:43 a.m. Eastern.

The S&P 500 was up 2, or 0.2 percent, to 1,227. The Nasdaq composite slid 10, or 0.4 percent, to 2,647.

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