By Kristina Cooke
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stocks edged higher on Tuesday after embattled automaker GM
Financial shares, which had earlier led decliners in the S&P 500, turned higher. Lehman Brothers
But concerns about inflation continued to weigh on the market. U.S. crude oil futures
"Two letters: GM. We're oversold and so with so many people looking for that bounce, any news that is a little better than expected is going to get a bit of a rebound going," said Joe Saluzzi, co-manager at Themis Trading in Chatham, New Jersey. "People were just looking for a reason to jump in and buy the beaten-down stocks."
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was up 2.69 points, or 0.02 percent, at 11,352.70. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> was up 0.97 of a point, or 0.08 percent, at 1,280.97. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> was up 4.77 points, or 0.21 percent, at 2,297.75.
General Motors shares jumped 5.3 percent to $12.13.
Earlier, a report showed U.S. manufacturing expanded in June for the first time in five months, helped by a weak dollar, but inflation pressures soared to their highest since the stagflation-ravaged 1970s.
Among financial shares, Lehman Brothers rose 4.9 percent to $20.78. An index of S&P financial stocks <.GSPF> rose 0.5 percent.
Shares of commercial lender CIT Group Inc
Apart from the ISM data, a report by the government showed U.S. construction spending fell 0.4 percent in May as home building continued to deteriorate. The data will add to concerns that the United States has entered a period of weak growth accompanied by high inflation.
(Editing by Jan Paschal)