Stocks Slip As Greek Talks Drag On

U.S. stocks closed lower Monday, as talks drag on between Greek political leaders over a fresh austerity package required for the country to get more bailout loans. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 17.10 points, or 0.13%, to 12,845.13. The S&P 500 dropped 0.57 point, or 0.04%, to 1,344.33. The Nasdaq Composite lost 3.67 points, or 0.13%, to 2,901.99.

Greece’s political leaders remained under intense pressure from Europe on Monday to agree to new austerity measures in order to receive a second bailout package seen as crucial to averting a messy default. Talks between the three parties that back Prime Minister Lucas Papademos’s interim government were pushed back to Tuesday.

Yum Brands earned $356 million, or 75 cents a share in the fourth quarter, up from $274 million, or 56 cents a share in the same period a year ago, the company said after the closing bell Monday. Revenue came in at $4.11 billion vs. $3.56 billion.

Astronics Corp. reported higher revenue than analysts had expected in the fourth quarter. Fourth-quarter net income rose 16 percent to $5.2 million, or 40 cents per share, compared with $4.5 million, or 35 cents per share, the year before. Revenue rose 18 percent to $61.2 million.

Hasbro Inc. said Monday that its fourth-quarter profit slipped 1 percent. It reported net income of $139.1 million, or $1.06 per share, for the period ended Dec. 25. That compares with $140 million, or 99 cents per share, a year earlier. Hasbro’s quarterly revenue rose 4 percent to $1.33 billion from $1.28 billion, buoyed by overseas sales and its boys and preschool categories.

Gold futures declined Monday, with prices pulling back by as much as $26 an ounce as strength in the U.S. dollar dampened interest in metals. Gold for April delivery declined $15.40, or 0.9%, to settle at $1,724.90 an ounce on Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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