Among earnings, CVS edged higher after the drug store chain edged past earnings expectations and raised its forecast for the full year, on improving sales at its stores and an increase in pharmacy benefit clients.
Express Scripts tumbled to lead the S&P 500 laggards after the pharmacy benefit manager posted revenue that was short of estimates and said a weak business climate will hurt its 2013 results.
Zillow plunged after the real estate database website handed in a fourth-quarter revenue below estimates and the company lost one of its larger advertisers. At least three brokerages cut their price target on the company.
News Corp is scheduled report after the closing bell.
Meanwhile, NYSE Euronext reported a 21 percent drop in third-quarter revenue, reflecting weaker trading activity in London, France and New York. However, third-quarter earnings per share beat estimates.
So far, nearly 80 percent of S&P 500 companies have posted earnings, with more than 61 percent topping expectations. The figure is roughly in line with the 62 percent quarterly average since 1994 and below the 67 percent average over the past four quarters.
Treasury prices slipped after the government auctioned $32 billion in 3-year notes at a high yield of 0.392 percent and bid-to-cover was 3.41.
European shares ended higher, despite renewed uncertainty in Greece as its two largest unions commenced a two-day strike against austerity measures.
Coming Up This Week:
WEDNESDAY: Weekly mortgage apps, oil inventories, 10-yr note auction, consumer credit, Coach shareholders mtg, Oracle shareholders mtg; Earnings from Macy's, Sodastream, Qualcomm, Activision Blizzard, CBS, Monster Beverage, Whole Foods
THURSDAY: International trade, jobless claims, 30-yr bond auction, Kellogg analyst day, 3M investor mtg, OPEC press conference; Earnings from Dean Foods, Wendy's, Disney, Groupon, Nordstrom, Nvidia, Kayak, Zipcar
FRIDAY: Import/export prices, consumer sentiment, wholesale trade; Earnings from JCPenney
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