Home permit data boosts US - New York Report

US STOCKS ended mixed yesterday, with the Dow rising marginally to a second straight record high, as Wall Street digested housing data that some saw as hopeful for an economy struggling to grow.

US housing starts jumped to their highest level in nearly seven and a half years in April.

Some investors interpreted that as a promising sign that a slow economy may be gaining steam, while others focused on uncertainty about when the Fed will start raising interest rates to head off inflation.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 13.51 points, or 0.07 percent, to end at 18,312.39 points.

The S&P hit an intraday record of 2,133.02 before ending down 1.37 points, or 0.06 per cent, at 2,127.83. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 8.41 points, or 0.17 per cent, to 5,070.03.

The S&P had closed at record highs on Friday and again on Monday.