Stocks Mixed in Early Trading, Caterpillar Cut Forecast

U.S. stocks opened modestly higher and turned mixed on Monday, though mixed results from Caterpillar Inc and  Halliburton Co pointed to choppy trading ahead. The Dow Jones industrial average lately fell 19.89 points, or  0.14 percent, at 14,527.62. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was down 0.41 points, or 0.03 percent, at  1,554.84. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 6.82 points, or 0.21 percent, at 3,212.88.

Caterpillar (CAT) posted earnings and revenue that missed Wall Street expectations on Monday, and cut its  full-year outlook for 2013 to reflect a drop in demand for heavy equipment from its mining customers.  Caterpillar posted quarterly earnings excluding items of $1.31 per share, down from $2.37 per share in the  comparable year-ago period. Revenue sank to $13.21 billion from $15.98 billion a year ago.

Oil and natural gas field services giant Halliburton (HAL) reported first quarter sales and earnings topped  analyst consensus projections. Actual earnings were hard hit by a $637 million charge taken too boost  reserves held in relation to the Macondo well blowout and oil spill in 2010. The company said overseas growth  more than compensated for slowed drilling activity and pricing challenges in North America.

LG Display Co Ltd reported its smallest profit since it returned to the black in the second quarter of last  year, as demand for iPhone and iPad screens from Apple weakened amid concerns the U.S. company is losing its  luster in the mobile device market. LG Display made 151 billion won ($135 million) in operating profit in its  January-March first quarter. That compared with the average forecast of a 147 billion won profit in a Thomson
Reuters poll of analysts.

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