Stocks slow down following 2 days of big gains

Dow Jones industrial average still near record


NEW YORK — A rally is losing steam on Wall Street as indexes inch higher following two days of triple-digit gains.

The Dow Jones industrial average was up 16 points at 14,091 at midday today. It's just 73 points below the record high it reached in October, 2007. The Dow had jumped 291 points over the past two days on new signs of strength in the housing market and a jump in consumer confidence.

The Standard & Poor's 500 was up two at 1,518. The Nasdaq composite edged up seven to 3,169.

J.C. Penney plunged 19 percent after the struggling department store chain reported a full-year loss that was bigger than analysts were expecting.

Wendy's, Domino's, and the clothing chain Chico's were all up after reporting higher profit and revenue.