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Stocks Take a Roller-Coaster Ride; Rise, Fall, Close on a High

Stocks went on a roller-coaster ride on Tuesday, first climbing on some strong corporate earnings, then dropping on poor economic data, before closing the day on the upswing again.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 100 points in the morning, changed direction and fell 80 points, then rose again in the afternoon, to close unofficially 89 points ahead. The S&P 500 finished 12 points higher and the Nasdaq added 11 points.

Reports of pro-Russian separatists briefly taking control of an airfield in eastern Ukraine also weighed on investor sentiment early on, but the mood shifted in the afternoon, when investors were heartened that "the worst case scenario hasn't come to fruition," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities.

Stocks went on a roller-coaster ride, climbing on strong corporate earnings, dropping on poor economic data, before closing the day on the upswing.
Stocks went on a roller-coaster ride, climbing on strong corporate earnings, dropping on poor economic data, before closing the day on the upswing. Erin O. Smith / AP

The market's latest reversal happened at the same time as a story that Japan planned to downgrade its economic assessment. "It's hard to pinpoint on any one headline," said Dan Greenhaus, chief global strategist at BTIG. But the idea that the "Bank of Japan could do a little more support took the yen down and coincided with a turn in equities," he added.

Wall Street started off the session higher, with the Dow climbing nearly 100 points, after Coca-Cola reported first-quarter revenue that beat expectations and Johnson & Johnson hiked its yearly outlook.

But equities returned to their recent downward mode after the Federal Reserve Bank of New York's gauge of manufacturing fell in March and the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index climbed to 47 in April, coming in below estimates.

The dollar edged higher against other global currencies and the 10-year Treasury yield fell 3 basis points to 2.615 percent. Crude-oil futures for May delivery fell 34 cents, or 0.3 percent, to $103.71 a barrel.