The markets made modest gains during the midday despite sharply lower consumer confidence. The Dow gained 24 points to 11,866 while Nasdaq eased a point to 2385.
On the upside
CenturyTel (NYSE: CTL) announced that its quarterly dividend will increase by tenfold.
Credit Suisse initiated coverage of DR Horton (NYSE: DHI) with an Outperform rating.
On the downsideShares of Web-tracking company comScore (Nasdaq: SCOR) plunged after an article on The Wall Street Journal's website reported that Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) was launching its own tracking service.
S&P cut its price target for AirTran Holdings (NYSE: AAI) and downgraded the airliner.
CNH Global (NYSE: CNH) announced a 5% surcharge on a number of products as steel and energy expenses soar.
In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by 5 to 3 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 3 points to 716.