Stocks mostly lower on weak earnings

UPS, GE and others issue disappointing results


NEW YORK — U.S. stocks are edging mostly lower after United Parcel Service, General Electric, and other companies issued disappointing earnings news or forecasts.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index was down two points, or 0.1 percent, to 1,844 in midday trading toay.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose, but mainly because of big gains in just two of the 30 stocks in the average, American Express, and Visa.

The Dow was up 45 points, or 0.3 percent, at 16,462 points. Without the gains from Amex and Visa, the Dow would be slightly lower.

Amex reported late Thursday that its income more than doubled in the fourth quarter. Its stock rose 5 percent today.

The Nasdaq composite slipped five points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,213.