Meager Gain For Wages And Benefits
Wages and benefits posted a meager 1.5% gain in 2009, the lowest on record. The markets traded mixed during the midday with the Dow rising 52 points to 10,173 while Nasdaq lost 3 points to 2175.

On the upside

Acxion (Nasdaq: ACXM) swung to a third quarter profit that topped analyst estimates.

Shares of uranium supplier USEC (NYSE: USU) rose over reports that President Obama proposes to triple loan guarantees for nuclear reactors.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers awarded The Shaw Group (NYSE: SHAW) a five year environmental remedial action services contract in the Kansas City District.

On the downside

While Quantum (NYSE: QTM) reversed year ago losses to post a profit for the third quarter, the results fell short of estimates.

Arch Coal (NYSE: ACI) blamed soft demand for sharply lower fourth quarter earnings and forecast 2010 results below expectations.

Wilmington Trust (NYSE: WL) narrowed fourth quarter losses but the results missed expectations.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 10 to 9 on the NYSE while advancers barely edged out decliners by a slim margin on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added a point to 609.

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