NEW YORK — Stocks closed mixed in lackluster trading Friday, although the Dow Jones industrial average emerged with its first weekly gain since mid-July.
Steel, telephone and drug issues were numerous among the losers, while chemical and oil stocks moved ahead.
The Dow Jones average of 30 industrials inched up 0.22 to 1,318.32, giving it a gain for the week of 5.60 points--its first weekly advance since climbing nearly 21 points the week ended July 19.
The Dow Jones transportation and utility averages also rose a fraction.
Advances and declines overall were nearly even on the New York Stock Exchange, whose composite index slipped 0.08 to 108.49.
Big Board volume slowed to 75.27 million shares from 90.60 million Thursday.
Prices drifted within a narrow range for much of the day, generally at slightly lower levels compared to Thursday's close. Prices firmed a bit in the final hour to lift some market averages into plus territory.
The market appeared to lose its enthusiasm following Thursday's broad decline, which had quashed a relatively weak rally mounted during the previous two days.
The downturn came after investors received new indications that the economy remains sluggish.
Takeover Issues Dominate
The credit markets also were quiet Friday, with bond prices slightly lower and interest rates little changed.
Stocks in the takeover spotlight again dominated trading.
SCM rose 1 3/4 to 65 7/8 after saying that its board would meet to consider Hanson Trust PLC's offer to buy SCM for $60 a share.
Transway International climbed 1 7/8 to 44 3/4 after Nortek sweetened its bid for Transway by $5 a share to $45. Nortek edged down 1/8 to 16 3/8.
Trans World Airlines was unchanged at 22 3/8. After the close, financier Carl C. Icahn confirmed that he had lifted his stake in TWA to a controlling 50.3% from 47%. It is believed he did so by purchasing a 930,000-share block that crossed the tape at 22 1/2.
Auto stocks were mixed after the major U.S. producers reported a combined 4.6% sales drop for mid-August. General Motors fell to 66 3/4, Ford Motor was unchanged at 43 3/4 and Chrysler gained to 36 1/8.
USF&G topped the NYSE's active list and fell 3/8 to 33 1/2, the price at which a 2.88-million-share block traded.
Tektronix skidded 4 3/4 to 57 3/4 after saying that its fiscal first-quarter earnings likely would trail those of a year earlier.
In the bond markets, prices drifted lower in quiet trading while short-term interest rates were little changed.
In the secondary market for Treasury bonds, prices of short-term governments slipped 1/32 point, intermediate maturities lost 6/32 point and long-term issues were off 10/32 point.
In corporate trading, industrials and utilities fell point in light trading.