US STOCKS-Wall St flat in face of strong resistance


 * S&P 500 seen testing its 2011 high
 * Pfizer to sell unit to KKR for about $2.4 billion
 * Dow, S&P flat; Nasdaq down 0.1 pct
 * For up-to-the-minute market news see [STXNEWS/US]
 (Updates to market open, updates graphic)
 By Rodrigo Campos
 NEW YORK, April 4 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were little
changed after a higher open on Monday, with the S&P 500 facing
levels where selling has clustered in recent sessions.
 The benchmark hovered near 1,333, a level it has been
unable to close above since mid-February. That level is double
the 12-year low hit in March 2009 and is not far from 1,344,
the S&P's 2011 high and its highest since June 2008.
 "I think the market has enough inertia and the retest of
1,344 is in store," said Richard Ross, global technical
strategist at Auerbach Grayson in New York. "We're looking for
a marginal new high on the S&P 500 setting you up for the next
leg of the advance."
 "If you did have a breakout which failed, those false
breakouts often lead to a fast move in the opposite
direction."
 On Friday, the S&P recorded its best two-week period since
December, and the Dow industrials (.DJI: Quote, Profile, Research) hit its highest
intraday level since June 2008.
 "It wouldn't be unhealthy to see a period of consolidation
in the short term, but with this kind of momentum you sometimes
don't get that pause," Ross said.
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 The Dow Jones industrial average (.DJI: Quote, Profile, Research) added just 2.54
points, or 0.02 percent, to 12,379.26. The Standard & Poor's
500 (.SPX: Quote, Profile, Research) edged up 0.05 point to 1,332.46. The Nasdaq
Composite Index (.IXIC: Quote, Profile, Research) slipped 3.95 points, or 0.14 percent,
to 2,785.65.
 The lack of significant economic data on Monday, nuclear
and other quake-related problems in Japan and unrest in Libya,
Syria and other states in the oil-rich region could translate
into low volumes in Wall Street. Last week was the lowest in
volume so far in 2011.
 In acquisition news, Pfizer Inc (PFE.N: Quote, Profile, Research) rose 0.8 percent to
$20.54 after the drugmaker agreed to sell its Capsugel unit,
the world's largest maker of hard capsules, to private equity
firm KKR & Co (KKR.N: Quote, Profile, Research) for nearly $2.4 billion.
 (Reporting by Rodrigo Campos; Editing by Kenneth Barry)




US STOCKS-Wall St flat in face of strong resistance