NEW YORK — The stock market turned in a mixed showing today, pausing after its broad-based rally of the past three weeks.
The Dow Jones average of 30 industrials dropped 4.30 to 1,270.43.
But advances outnumbered declines by about six to five on the New York Stock Exchange, marking the 14th consecutive session in which gainers have been in the majority.
Big Board volume came to 160.74 million shares, the eighth largest total on record, against 144.43 million in the previous session.
The NYSE's composite index lost 0.24 to 102.03.
At the American Stock Exchange, the market-value index was up 0.37 at 219.57.
Analysts said some traders were following a natural urge to take profits, with stock prices having come a long way in a short time.
The market's early-1985 rally hasn't been as dramatic as the brief but powerful upsurge it staged last summer.
But Wall Street analysts say it has been more impressive in many ways--most notably in its staying power.
The revival of enthusiasm for stocks has been attributed to a stimulative credit policy by the Federal Reserve, signs of a pickup in the pace of economic growth, continued low inflation and declining interest rates.
Bond prices moved higher in active trading, extending their strong performance for the third consecutive session.
Yields on 30-year Treasury bonds fell to 11.21% from 11.33% late Wednesday and 11.53% at the end of last week.
Wednesday afternoon, the Treasury sold $9.02 billion in 2-year notes at an average yield of 9.83%, down from 9.92% at the end of December. It was the lowest average yield at a 2-year note auction since it sold a similar issue for 9.61% on May 2, 1983.
In the secondary market for Treasury bonds, prices of short-term governments rose 1/8 point, intermediate issues rose 6/32 point to 5/8 point and long-term issues climbed as much as a full point, according to the investment firm of Salomon Bros. Inc.
Long-Term Treasury Bonds Up
The movement of a point is equivalent to a change of $10 in the price of a bond with a $1,000 face value.
In corporate trading, industrials and utilities rose 1/2 point in active trading. Among tax-exempt municipal bonds, general obligations rose point in light activity and revenue bonds were up 1/2 point in heavy trading.
Yields on three-month Treasury bills were unchanged at 7.61%. A basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point. Six-month bills were also unchanged at 7.89% and one-year bills were up 1 basis point at 8.23%.
The federal funds rate, the interest on overnight loans between banks, traded at 8.313%, down from 8 3/8% late Wednesday.