* Major indexes heading for biggest weekly drops in months
* Housing starts increase 5.9 percent in July after a
decline in June
* Green Mountain Coffee Roasters' stock up, to join Nasdaq
* Nordstrom latest to report weak retail revenues, shares
* Indexes: Dow down 0.1 pct, S&P down 0.2 pct, Nasdaq up 0.1
By Havovi Cooper
NEW YORK, Aug 16 U.S. stocks were little changed
on Friday after the largest sell-off in almost two months in the
previous session, but homebuilders rebounded on recent housing
The S&P 500 and Nasdaq composite indexes were on track for
the largest weekly declines since late June, and the Dow
industrials headed for the largest weekly drop since April.
"We are unlikely to see a large-scale correction in the
market right now, but it certainly is losing the momentum that
took it to strong highs earlier this year." said Rick Meckler,
president of investment firm Liberty View Capital Management in
Jersey City, New Jersey.
U.S. housing starts rose 5.9 percent in July, compared with
a 9.9 percent drop in June. Homebuilders Pulte Group and
Lennar Corp. rallied on the news and were among the top
percentage gainers on the S&P 500.
In addition, a report on Thursday showed confidence among
single-family homebuilders neared an eight-year high in August.
Pulte rose 2.7 percent to $16.37, while Lennar advanced 2.6
percent to $34.17
The Dow Jones industrial average was down 23.08
points, or 0.15 percent, at 15,089.11. The Standard & Poor's 500
Index was down 3.64 points, or 0.22 percent, at
1,657.68. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 6.01
points, or 0.17 percent, at 3,612.13.
Nordstrom became the latest department store chain
to post lower-than-expected second-quarter revenue as its
same-store sales slipped, prompting it to lower its full-year
sales and profit forecast. Shares fell 3 percent to
Other retailers have disappointed investors with
second-quarter earnings. From Wal-Mart and Gap
to Macy's and McDonald's, chains that cater to
middle- and lower-income Americans are feeling the pinch of an
uneven economic recovery.
Adding to the market's concerns, the Thomson
Reuters/University of Michigan's preliminary reading on consumer
sentiment in August slipped from July's six-year high. August's
reading was the lowest in four months.
Yields on U.S. government debt extended a rise, which could
lead to steeper borrowing costs for businesses and consumers and
pressure stock prices. After a bond market sell-off on Thursday,
the benchmark 10-year note's yield jumped to a two-year high.
Green Mountain Coffee Roasters shares rose 3
percent to $75.11 after Nasdaq OMX said the company will replace
Life Technologies in the Nasdaq 100 index on August 22.
Pandora Media shares jumped 7 percent to $21.24
following a bullish call on the stock from Goldman Sachs.
J.C. Penney shares fell 3.3 percent to $13.60 as the
retailer entered into an agreement with former board member and
largest shareholder Bill Ackman, that paves the way for him to
sell his stake.