U.S. stocks fluctuated, the dollar advanced and Treasuries rose as investors assessed the outlook for higher interest rates after consumer prices fell short of the Federal Reserve’s inflation target.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index fell 0.1 percent at 12:42 p.m. in New York. The Nasdaq Composite Index approached an all-time high as Netflix Inc. and Google Inc. paced gains in technology shares. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index climbed 0.4 percent. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index added 0.2 percent, while the yield on 10-year Treasuries slipped one basis point to 1.89 percent. West Texas Intermediate crude fluctuated near $47.50 a barrel. Gold rose 0.1 percent.

The cost of living in the U.S. climbed 0.2 percent in February, as fuel costs stabilized. Prices were unchanged from a year earlier. Fed policy makers are looking for inflation to accelerate and close in on their 2 percent target as they weigh the timing of the first rate increase since 2006. Purchases of new homes in the U.S. unexpectedly rose in February to a seven-year high.

The Bloomberg dollar gauge had its biggest drop in three years last week and U.S. equities rallied after the Fed cut projections for future interest rates, inflation and growth. The S&P 500 is less than 1 percent from its latest all-time high set on March 2, while the Nasdaq Composite Index closed Monday 0.8 percent below its March 2000 record.

Source : Bloomberg