Strange close. Volume spiked dramatically in the last couple minutes. NYSE floor volume went from below 600 million to 851 million in a couple minutes.
It's easy to blame this on end of the month trading, but it happened on Friday as well.
The modest rise (20 points) in the Dow in the last few minutes was enough to put the Dow in positive territory for the month, keeping up a 7-month win streak.
Regardless. The mood was sour all day. After several weeks of choppy economic data (including today's weak Chicago and Dallas PMI) traders are now facing the prospects of even more anemic growth ... and expectations were not very high to begin with.