* Empire State rises but retail sales disappoint
* Citigroup shares jump after earnings
* Leap shares more than double
* Dow flat, S&P off 0.1 pct, Nasdaq off 0.1 pct
By Leah Schnurr and Alison Griswold
NEW YORK, July 15 U.S. stocks were little
changed at the open on Monday after hitting record highs in the
previous session, as better-than-expected earnings from
Citigroup were offset by mixed U.S. economic data.
Shares of Citigroup advanced 1.8 percent to $51.72
after the third-largest U.S. bank by assets reported a 26
percent increase in adjusted quarterly profit. The S&P 500
financial industry sector index was up 0.2 percent.
Leap Wireless International Inc more than doubled
after AT&T Inc said Friday it would buy the company for
$1.19 billion and at least two brokerages raised their ratings
on Leap's stock. The stock was trading at $17.16
and was the most active on the Nasdaq.
Action on the broader market was more muted, as indexes
declined slightly. The day's economic data sent mixed signals,
with growth in New York state manufacturing for July
accelerating but June retail sales disappointing.
"It looks like we're in for a little bit of a pause at the
open," said Michael Sheldon, chief market strategist at RDM
Financial in Westport, Connecticut. "It's still early to get a
sense for overall earnings."
Analysts expect S&P 500 companies' second-quarter earnings
to have grown 2.8 percent from a year earlier, with revenue up
1.5 percent, data from Thomson Reuters showed. Cintas Corp
is expected to report after the close.
S&P 500 industrial shares also rose, as airlines over the
weekend expressed confidence in the safety of Boeing's
787 Dreamliner following a fire on one of the jets last week.
Boeing gained 2.1 percent to $103.93.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 4.83 points,
or 0.03 percent, at 15,469.13. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index
edged down 0.11 points, or 0.01 percent, at 1,680.08, and
the Nasdaq Composite Index was off 1.62 points, or 0.05
percent, at 3,598.46.
Both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 ended
Friday's session at record closing highs, though the point and
percentage gains for the day were slim.
Bank of America-Merrill Lynch raised its year-end target for
the S&P 500 to 1,750 from 1,600, citing expected earnings
Over the past three weeks, the benchmark S&P 500 has erased
losses of nearly 6 percent from the selloff triggered in late
May by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, when he first
raised the prospect of trimming the Fed's $85 billion in monthly
bond purchases. Since then, Bernanke and other Fed officials
have reassured investors that the central bank will keep
monetary policy loose for some time.