US stocks, consumer confidence edge higher

New York, Oct 27 (DPA) Major US stock indices inched higher Tuesday, mirroring a slight rise in the confidence of US consumers.

The New York-based Conference Board’s index of confidence climbed to 50.2 in October from 48.6 in September. The index remains near record lows as unemployment remains high and the economy struggles to pull out of a prolonged slump.

Once-struggling carmaker Ford Motor Co. announced record third-quarter earnings of $1.69 billion. Stocks were held in check by disappointing earnings reports from other leading companies including US Steel and household goods maker Kimberly-Clark Corp.

The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 5.41 points, or 0.05 percent, to 11,169.46. The broader Standard and Poor’s 500 Index was virtually unchanged, up 0.02 points to 1,185.64. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 6.44 points, or 0.26 percent, to 2,497.29.

The US currency rose against the euro to 72.19 euro cents from 71.57 euro cents Monday. The dollar climbed against the Japanese currency to 81.46 yen from 80.8 yen.

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