New York - US stocks traded mixed on Monday as investors weighed better-than-expected March retail sales numbers, a sharp slowdown in New York manufacturing and renewed eurozone debt tensions.
The three main indexes opened with solid gains after a second straight weekly decline, but sentiment was tempered after a batch of contradictory signals on the health of the US economy.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 71.82 points to finish at 12 921.41.
The broader S&P 500 inched down 0.69 point to 1 369.57, while the Nasdaq tumbled 22.93 to 2 988.40, under pressure from technology stocks.
The Commerce Department reported overall retail and food service sales expanded by 0.8% last month, slightly below February's increase but better than analysts expected.
But the New York state manufacturing index plunged to 6.6 in April, from 20.2 in March, and a homebuilders sentiment index fell more than expected.
Overhanging the US market was a rise in Spanish and Italian bond yields, said Dick Green at Briefing.com, adding, "the obsession is building."
"The market focus goes through fashions and a shift to Europe would increase anxiety in the US stock market."
In US corporate earnings news, Citigroup reported a $2.9bn profit for the first quarter of the year, beating market forecasts. Shares in the banking giant rose 1.8%.
Toymaker Mattel plunged 9.1% after posting first-quarter profit slightly below expectations, with sales in North America falling 9.0%.
Walmart rose 1.4%. The world's biggest retailer named Marissa Mayer, Google vice president, to its board of directors. Her nomination will be considered at a June 1 shareholders meeting.
Technology stocks weighed on the Nasdaq. Apple sank 4.2% and Google shed 3.0%.
Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year US Treasury fell to 1.97% from 2.00% on Friday while the 30-year yield declined to 3.11% from 3.15%.