US STOCKS-Wall St little changed as energy pares gains

lunes 29 de diciembre de 2014 15:13 GYT

* Trading volume light in holiday week

* Gilead Sciences rises on analyst upgrade

* Oil turns sharply lower, energy cuts gains

* Dow off 0.05 pct, S&P 500 up 0.1 pct, Nasdaq off 0.09 pct (Updates to mid-afternoon trading, changes byline)

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, Dec 29 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were little changed in a quiet session on Monday as a decline in oil prices weighed on the energy sector, although the S&P 500 was on track to notch yet another record high.

Equities have trended to the upside of late, buoyed by data showing an improving economy and the U.S. Federal Reserve's commitment to take a "patient" approach toward raising interest rates. The S&P 500 has gained 5.9 percent over the prior seven sessions, notching its 52nd record close of the year on Friday.

The S&P energy index lost 0.2 percent, after climbing more than 1 percent as Brent and U.S. crude oil turned lower. Brent was last off 2.8 percent at $57.80 while WTI lost 2.6 percent to $53.30.

In contrast to the fall in energy names, consumer discretionary names were among the day's biggest gainers, with the sector up 0.5 percent. General Motors rose 2.3 percent to $34.51 while retail names were also strong on the day. The S&P 500 retail sector rose 0.6 percent while Macy's Inc advanced 2 percent to $65.30 and was up 0.7 percent to $311.30.   Continuación...