Stocks fluctuate as investors battle uncertainty |

Stocks fluctuate as investors battle uncertainty

Associated Press

NEW YORK Wall Street is struggling to find a direction as investors vacillate between hopes for the financial sector and pessimism about the broader economy’s slide.Financial stocks are higher on a report that Bank of America could raise capital in the private sector. Analysts see this as a positive alternative to the government buying bigger stakes in banks.Meanwhile, drugmakers Merck and Schering-Plough are combining in a $41 billion deal.However, layoffs at McClatchy Co. are weighing on the market.In midday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average is down 2 points at 6,624. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index is up 2 at 685, while the Nasdaq composite index is down 3 at 1,290.

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