NEW YORK — Stock prices moved higher Tuesday as the trading pace quickened. Price gains moderated from the previous session amid further uncertainty over the economy.
The Dow Jones average of 30 industrials, slightly lower for much of the day, closed up 4.36 at 1,797.71. On Monday, the Dow average posted a 30.80-point gain.
Boosting stocks in a narrow range for much of the day was a rally in the bond markets following government reports indicating continued weakness in the economy, which could allay recent fears of resurgent inflation. While further economic weakness is expected to keep interest rates low, it also is seen as hindering corporate earnings.
USX fell 1 7/8 to 23 on volume of 6.48 million shares. Moody's Investors Service lowered the debt ratings of the giant steel and energy company.
AT&T led the active list, up 1/8 at 23 7/8 as 6.57 million shares changed hands. Among actively traded regional telephone companies, Bell Atlantic was up 1 3/8 to 68 7/8, Ameritech up 3 to 135 7/8 and Nynex up 3/4 to 64 5/8.
Airlines led a general rise in transportation issues. TWA was up 2 1/8 to 25, AMR up 1 3/8 to 58, Pan Am up to 5 5/8 and Delta up 1/2 to 44.
First Pennsylvania rose 2 1/8 to 9 1/2. The banking company agreed to be acquired for at least $15 a share by Marine Midland Banks within a year after state laws allow the interstate merger.
Western Pacific Industries spurted 10 to 172. The company said it had received a cash buyout proposal for at least $165 a share from Danaher Corp. days after accepting a $155-a-share offer from an investment group.
Borg-Warner rose 2 5/8 to 34 1/8. The company said it would buy back 15 million of its common shares and increase its quarterly dividend.
Government bond prices gained while interest rates fell slightly. Corporate and municipal issues also moved higher.
In secondary market trading, the Treasury's key 30-year bond rose about 3/4 point, or $7.50 per $1,000 face amount, which cut its yield to 7.72% from 7.79% late Monday.
Elsewhere in the secondary market for Treasury securities, prices of short-term governments rose by 1/32 point to 3/32 point and intermediate maturities rose by 5/32 point to 1/2 point, according to the investment firm of Salomon Bros.