Investors are waiting to see what happens next with debt-ceiling negotiations in Washington, just like everybody else.
Stocks inched higher in morning trading Friday. The pause followed Thursday's big gains — including the biggest point rise of the year for the Dow Jones industrial average — as investors bet against a U.S. debt default.
Ninety minutes after trading began, the Dow was up 18 points, or 0.1 percent, to 15,144. The Standard & Poor's 500 index was up less than one point to 1,693. The Nasdaq rose six points to 3,767.
A partial government shutdown, which entered its 11th day Friday, pushed the Dow below 15,000 this week before President Barack Obama and House Republicans met on Thursday to talk about the outlines for a deal. Obama planned a late-morning White House meeting Friday with Republican senators, who said they would present options of their own for ending the shutdown.