Early stock gains faded closing relatively flat ahead of tomorrow's monthly jobs report. Jeanne Yurman reports.
Stocks lost their grip on earlier gains, despite upbeat economic data and news that the European Central Bank may extend its stimulus program to help. The Dow, S&P 500 and the Nasdaq closed mixed. Another day chock full of data. New claims for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week, but longer term trend underscores ongoing strength in the labor market. The U.S. trade deficit fell in July to its lowest level in five months as exports rose. And the service sector, which employs 80 percent of all Americans, continued to expand last month, albeit at a slightly slower pace. Shares of teen retailer Five Below fell after trimming its third quarter outlook. Land's End shares rose after the company posted a sales decline that was less than expected. In Europe, stocks got a boost from as the ECB issued reassurance that it would add stimulus if needed.