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The close: S&P 500 recovers to slight gain Add to ...

Stocks recovered from mild, though broad, declines on Monday, ending the day relatively flat ahead of a two-day policy meeting by the U.S. Federal Reserve.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed at 13,345.89, up 2.38 points or zero per cent, recovering about 110 points from its low point during the day. The broader S&P 500 closed at 1433.81, up 0.62 point – averting what had been looking like a three-day losing streak for the benchmark index. In Canada, the S&P/TSX composite index closed at 12,403.54, down 12.44 points or 0.1 per cent.

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Energy stocks were by far the biggest laggards within the TSX after Ottawa killed a takeover of Progress Energy Resources Corp. by Malaysia’s state-owned Petronas, raising concerns about the Canadian government’s views toward foreign-backed takeovers in general.

The energy subindex within the TSX fell 1.3 per cent, marking its biggest one-day decline since early August.

Progress fell 10.4 per cent, which is a milder decline than some observers had been fearing. Among other casualties in the regulatory-fuelled selloff, Encana Corp. fell 4 per cent and Nexen Inc. fell 4.4 per cent.

It didn’t help that crude oil prices also declined. In New York, oil fell to $88.73 (U.S.) a barrel, down $1.32.

Caterpillar Inc. rose 1.5 per cent after reporting a 49 per cent rise in its third-quarter earnings. However, the heavy-equipment maker lowered its full-year outlook because of the slowing global economy.

On Tuesday, the Fed begins a two-day meeting to discuss monetary policy. While the central bank satisfied demands at its last meeting to introduce stimulus measures, the statement on Wednesday could provide insight into economic conditions and targets for withdrawing stimulus.

In the post market Monday, U.S.-listed shares of Canadian National Railway were down 0.1 per cent after the company reported a modest rise in third-quarter earnings plus announced a share buyback plan. Yahoo shares were up 3.1 per cent after the Internet giant beat Street expectations with its latest quarter.

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