December 30, 2016 / 2:58 PM / 7 months ago

US STOCKS-Wall St flat on last trading day of 2016

3 Min Read

* Oil prices up 52 pct in 2016; S&P energy index best performer

* Utilities, telecom services top losers among S&P 500 sectors

* Mylan rises after launching two generic drugs

* Indexes down: Dow 0.02 pct, S&P 0.05 pct, Nasdaq 0.07 pct (Updates to open)

By Yashaswini Swamynathan

Dec 30 (Reuters) - Wall Street was flat after the open on the last trading day of 2016 due to losses across most sectors, but was still on track to record hefty gains for the year.

The S&P is on track to rise nearly 10 percent this year, the Nasdaq 8.3 percent and the Dow 13.7 percent.

The markets have shown surprising resilience to major political events, such as Britain's vote in June to leave the European Union and the election of Donald Trump as U.S. president in November.

U.S. stocks, which had not priced in a Trump victory in the run-up to the vote, marked a series of record highs on bets that his policies would spur growth.

"The prospects of growth took center stage this year, with investors hoping that the new political phenomenon will spur the economy," said Adam Sarhan, chief executive officer at 50 Park Investments in Orlando, Florida.

This year also stands in stark contrast to 2015 when a steep drop in oil prices left the S&P 500 and the Dow nursing losses. The commodity bounced back by more than 50 percent for its best year since 2009, partly due to a deal by major producers to limit supply.

The S&P energy index, which was the worst performer last year, is set to become the biggest gainer among the 10 other industry sectors in 2016.

At 9:39 a.m. ET (1439 GMT) the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 3.64 points, or 0.02 percent, at 19,816.14.

The S&P 500 was down 1.26 points, or 0.05 percent, at 2,248.

The Nasdaq Composite was down 3.64 points, or 0.07 percent, at 5,428.45.

Eight of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors were lower, with utilities and telecom services taking the biggest hit.

Cabela's shares fell 6 percent to $58.14 after U.S. antitrust regulators requested additional information regarding Bass Pro Shops proposed acquisition of the hunting and fish gear retailer.

Mylan rose 1.7 percent to $38.02 after the drug maker launched generic versions of two drugs.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1,452 to 1,094. On the Nasdaq, 1,123 issues fell and 1,092 advanced.

The S&P 500 index showed one new 52-week high and no new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 17 new highs and 10 new lows. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva)

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