* Netflix to raise share authorization in step to split stock
* GE shares slide after Friday’s sharp gains
* Indexes: Dow down 0.2 pct, S&P down 0.2 pct, Nasdaq up 0.02 pct (Updates to afternoon)
By Caroline Valetkevitch
April 13 (Reuters) - The Dow and S&P 500 edged lower on Monday as caution grew about the dollar’s impact on U.S. earnings, while the Nasdaq was up slightly after briefly trading above 5,000.
Shares of big pharmaceutical companies were among the biggest drags on the Dow and S&P 500, with Johnson & Johnson down 1.2 percent.
The dollar gained 0.2 percent against a basket of major currencies after hitting a peak of 99.99, its highest in four weeks. Market participants have been concerned about the impact of the currency’s strength on the profits of multinational companies.
Corporate earnings kicks into high gear this week. Estimates for first-quarter S&P 500 results have fallen sharply since Jan. 1, with earnings for the period expected to have declined 2.9 percent from a year ago, Thomson Reuters data showed.
“I think this is the first quarter where the dollar impact will really be measurable,” said Bruce Zaro, chief technical strategist at Bolton Global Asset Management in Boston.
At 2:21 p.m., the Dow Jones industrial average fell 38.07 points, or 0.21 percent, to 18,019.58, the S&P 500 lost 4.48 points, or 0.21 percent, to 2,097.58 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.99 points, or 0.02 percent, to 4,996.96.
Shares of General Electric were down 3 percent at $27.65 after rallying on Friday, when it said there was potential to return more than $90 billion to investors through 2018.
Apple shares dipped 0.2 percent to $126.87, reversing earlier gains that followed reports the Apple Watch may have received about a million orders in its debut.
Netflix shares were up 5 percent at $477.29. The video streaming company said Friday it was seeking to increase its share authorization by nearly 30 times as a possible first step towards a stock split.
Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by 1,709 to 1,294, for a 1.32-to-1 ratio; on the Nasdaq, 1,402 issues rose and 1,294 fell, for a 1.08-to-1 ratio favoring advancers.
The S&P 500 was posting 24 new 52-week highs and no new lows; the Nasdaq Composite was recording 99 new highs and 20 new lows. (Additional reporting by Tanya Agrawal; Editing by Bernadette Baum and Nick Zieminski)