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Stock Gains Evaporate, Investors Position for Quarter's End

Stocks trimmed their gains Friday afternoon as investors positioned for the end of the quarter Monday.
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Stocks trimmed their gains Friday afternoon, with the S&P 500 down for a second week in three, as investors positioned for the end of the quarter Monday.

"The last two trading days of the quarter, people are looking to take some profit. It's a similar pattern to what we've seen in some of these momentum stocks the last couple of days. The market is telling us you should expect more volatility today and Monday. People are trying to figure out which sectors to be in the next quarter, and what things do I need to be lightening up on," said JJ Kinahan, chief strategist at TD Ameritrade.

"When the market is trading in such a tight range, and the S&P 500 has been in a 40-point range for six weeks, people get trigger happy," Kinahan said.

Wall Street had rallied, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average jumping 150 points, on data that had U.S. consumer spending rising, and signals from Europe and China prompted thoughts of stimulus from overseas.

J.P. Morgan on Friday revised its estimate of real annualized GDP growth in the first quarter from 2 percent to 1.5 percent, while leaving its projection for the second quarter unchanged at 2.5 percent.

The Dow rose 0.4 percent, with Microsoft pacing gains that included 23 of its 30 components.

The S&P 500 advanced 0.4 percent, with energy and consumer discretionary rising the most and health care and telecommunications hardest hit among its 10 major industry groups.

After wavering between gains and losses, the Nasdaq Composite gained 0.1 percent.

-Kate Gibson, CNBC