Summary Box: Markets fall, then rally, on Greece

AP News
Posted: Feb 14, 2012 5:08 PM
Summary Box: Markets fall, then rally, on Greece

GREECE IS STILL THE WORD: The stock market languished for most of Tuesday, weighed down by news that Greece's debt talks were on the verge of breaking down the country's economy shrank 7 percent in the fourth quarter. Stocks rallied in the final 20 minutes after a report indicated Greece's conservative party leader could help clear the way for spending cuts that lenders are demanding.

NEAR A MILESTONE: The Dow continues to veer tantalizingly close to the 13,000 mark, a milestone it hasn't reached since early 2008, before the financial crisis imploded. The average closed at 12,878.28, its third-highest close for the year.

RETAIL THERAPY: Retail sales rose 0.4 percent in January, less than the 0.7 percent analysts were hoping for. Car sales fell and clothing sales were flat, indicating that consumers are still wary of spending on non-necessities.