NEW YORK (October 3, 2012)--Stocks closed with meager gains Wednesday after a pair of encouraging reports about U.S. private company hiring and the services industry.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 12 points to end the day at 13,495 Wednesday.
The Standard & Poor's 500 rose five to close at 1,451 and the Nasdaq rose 15 to end the day at 3,135.
Payroll provider ADP reported a better-than-expected number of job additions and the Institute for Supply Management said its service industry index rose to the highest level since March.
Energy stocks fell after a sharp decline in the price of crude oil.
Hewlett-Packard dropped 13 percent after the company's CEO predicted weak earnings and sales.
Rising and falling stocks were evenly matched on the New York Stock Exchange where volume was about average at 3.3 billion shares.