US stocks : Dow off 0.1 pct
"The general feeling underneath here is things are improving - Europe appears to be improving, at least politically getting their act together," Mendelsohn said.
The Dow Jones industrial average shed 10.45 points, or 0.08 percent, to 13,015.13. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index inched up just 0.62 of a point, or 0.04 pct to 1,417.80.
The Nasdaq Composite Index added 3.68 points, or 0.12 percent, to 3,013.92.
The S&P 500 briefly moved above its 50-day moving average at about 1,420, a level that the index has been below since Oct.
22, and now serving as a key resistance point for equities.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner pushed Republicans on Sunday to offer specific ideas to cut the deficit and predicted that they would agree to raise tax rates on the rich to obtain a year-end deal to avoid the fiscal cliff.
Dell shares rose 5.8 percent to $10.19 as one of the biggest percentage gainers in both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 after Goldman Sachs upgraded its view on the stock to "buy" from "sell."
Singapore Airlines said it was in talks with interested parties to sell its 49 percent stake in British carrier Virgin Atlantic, with sources saying that Delta Air Lines was among the potential suitors. Delta shares fell 1.8 percent to $9.82.
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