Stocks mixed as Dow extends recovery after strong U.S. business surveys

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  • VF shares tumbled after earnings miss
  • Bitcoin and crypto stocks fall on China crack down
  • Indexes: Dow rises 0.45%, S&P up 0.13%, Nasdaq dips 0.2%

May 21 (Reuters) - The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose on Friday, extending a recovery from the previous session, while inflation concerns still loom for growth stocks at the end of a volatile week of trading.

Helping the Dow outperform was Boeing (BA.N), which added 3.2% as industry sources said the planemaker has drawn up preliminary plans to increase in 737 MAX output to as many as 42 jets a month in fall 2022. read more

IHS Markit's data showed U.S. business activity picked up in May amid strong domestic demand, but backlogs of uncompleted work are piling up as manufacturers struggle to find raw materials and labor. read more

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Following a three-day slump, Wall Street's main indexes gained ground on Thursday after data showed the fewest U.S. weekly jobless claims since the pandemic-driven recession in 2020, pointing to a pickup in labor market.

Despite weakness on Friday, the Nasdaq is on course to snap a four-week losing streak as investors this week returned to tech-related mega-cap shares, which recently took the biggest hit on inflation worries.

"Everybody is grappling with the timing and extent of the COVID recovery. Inflation fears have really been triggered by some of these positive economic reports," said Greg Bassuk, CEO of AXS Investments.

People are seen on Wall St. outside the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., March 19, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Bitcoin dropped after China's Vice Premier Liu He said his government will crack down on the virtual currency's mining and trading activities. Cryptocurrency-related stocks Coinbase Global (COIN.O), Riot Blockchain (RIOT.O) and Marathon Digital Holdings (MARA.O) erased early gains to fall between 2% and 6.3%. read more

Seven of the 11 S&P sectors were higher, with economy-linked financials (.SPSY) and energy (.SPNY) providing the biggest boost.

At 2:05 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI) rose 154.21 points, or 0.45%, to 34,238.36, the S&P 500 (.SPX) gained 5.35 points, or 0.13%, to 4,164.47 and the Nasdaq Composite (.IXIC) dropped 27.38 points, or 0.2%, to 13,508.36

Ford Motor Co (F.N) rose 7.4% to $13.4, setting for their biggest daily percent gain in more than two months, after it announced plans on Thursday to form a battery joint venture in the U.S. with South Korean battery maker SK Innovation (096770.KS) to support its electric vehicle rollout, confirming a Reuters report earlier.

Nvidia Corp (NVDA.O) added about 3.4% after announcing a four-for-one stock split, as it looks to make its stock less expensive for investors. read more

VF Corp (VFC.N) slumped 7.5% after Vans and The North Face parent's quarterly profit fell short of estimates.

The S&P 500 posted 24 new 52-week highs and no new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 108 new highs and 24 new lows.

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Reporting by Medha Singh and Shashank Nayar in Bengaluru, Krystal Hu in New York; Editing by Maju Samuel and Aurora Ellis

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