U.S. stocks end mixed amid economic data

NEW YORK, Aug. 16 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks finished mixed on Tuesday as investors digested a slew of economic data.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 239.57 points, or 0.71 percent, to 34,152.01. The S&P 500 rose 8.06 points, or 0.19 percent, to 4,305.20. The Nasdaq Composite Index decreased 25.50 points, or 0.19 percent, to 13,102.55.

Six of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors ended in green, with consumer staples and consumer discretionary up 1.21 percent and 1.09 percent, respectively, outpacing the rest. Real estate dipped 0.42 percent, the worst-performing group.

Economic data released Tuesday were mixed. The U.S. Commerce Department reported Tuesday that U.S. housing starts in July plunged by 9.6 percent, indicating a cooling housing market amid rising rates and elevated inflation.

Meanwhile, the Federal Reserve reported that the U.S. industrial production index rose 0.6 percent in July, higher than market expectations for a 0.3-percent increase.

The more closely-watched July U.S. retail sales and the Fed's minutes are set for release on Wednesday.

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