Stocks are fluctuating as investors try to reconcile mixed signals about the economy.


Stocks are fluctuating as investors try to reconcile mixed signals about the economy.

Investors were relieved Friday when the government trimmed its estimate for the overall economy’s decline in the first quarter. Another positive sign was a rise in May consumer sentiment.

But a group representing Chicago-area purchasing executives reported a much steeper drop in Midwest business activity than expected. Also, the dollar is falling and oil prices are rising, stoking inflation worries.

At midday, the Dow Jones industrial average is down 13.06, or 0.1 percent, at 8,412.72. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index is up 0.30, or less than 0.1 percent, at 908.92. The Nasdaq composite index is down 4.79, or 0.3 percent, at 1,747.00.