Stocks edge higher on better manufacturing report

Five Below soars on earnings


FILE - In this Tuesday, March 25, 2014, file photo, trader Greg Mulligan, center, works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. World stock markets gained Wednesday as investors anticipated further stimulus measures from Europe and China while U.S. economic data reinforced recovery hopes in the world's largest economy. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)


NEW YORK — U.S. stocks are edging mostly higher as investors respond to an encouraging sign on manufacturing.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose two points, or 0.1 percent, to 1,867 in midday trading today.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 11 points, or 0.1 percent, to 16,379. The Nasdaq composite slipped 10 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,223.

Traders were encouraged by news that orders to U.S. factories for long-lasting manufactured goods rose in February by the largest amount since November. That followed a drop in January.

Discount retailer Five Below shot up 13 percent after reporting that its income beat analysts’ expectations in the latest quarter.