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Published: Monday, 3/12/2012 - Updated: 3 years ago

Dow inches up, S&P and Nasdaq fall

Europe meets on Greek bailout; China reports slower growth

NEW YORK — Greece is closer to fending off default, but that hasn’t given U.S. markets much of a boost.

Stocks struggled for direction after the country announced that its investors would agree to take big losses on the Greek government bonds they hold. That should help Greece avoid default by lightening its crushing debt load. But it will also make investors hesitant to invest there again.

The Dow Jones industrial average was up 19 points at 12,941 shortly before noon. It was up 41 points earlier.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 and the Nasdaq composite flitted between small gains and losses in the first half-hour of trading. By midday they were both down slightly. The S&P 500 was down 2 points to 1,368, and the Nasdaq was down 10 points to 2,978.

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