After an early rise, US stocks waver in afternoon trading

FILE- In this March 7, 2019, file photo Robert Arciero, center, works with fellow traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. The U.S. stock market opens at 9:30 a.m. EDT on Thursday, April 4. Richard Drew, File AP Photo

After a strong start, major US stock indexes are wavering between small gains and losses in afternoon trading on Wall Street Thursday.

Gains for banks and industrial companies are being offset by weakness in technology and health care stocks.

Citigroup rose 1% and Boeing climbed 2.5% as new details were released about the deadly Ethiopian Airlines jet crash. Microsoft slid 0.9% and Johnson & Johnson fell 1.4%.

Tesla sank as vehicle deliveries fell sharply in the first quarter. Office Depot plunged after issuing a weak forecast.

Markets have been wobbly throughout the week as investors wait for the government’s jobs report on Friday and prepare for a new round of corporate earnings reports next week.

Investors were also keeping a close watch on the latest rounds of U.S.-China trade negotiations. Washington and Beijing opened a ninth round of talks Wednesday, aiming to further narrow differences in a trade war that has deepened uncertainty for businesses and investors and cast a pall over the outlook for the global economy.

The trade war has intensified investor’s concerns about a global economic slowdown as they absorb a constant stream of mixed economic data. The latest report from the Labor Department shows that unemployment applications fell last week to their lowest level since 1969.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 97 points, or 0.4%, to 26,314 as of 1:39 p.m. Eastern Time. The S&P 500 index was little changed and the Nasdaq fell 0.3%. The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks edged up 0.1%.

Major indexes in Europe

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