(Corrects headline to say Wall St drifts at four-year highs,
instead of four-month highs)
* Chinese data leaves door open for more stimulus
* National Oilwell Varco to buy Robbins & Myers
* Cisco shares up after Goldman adds to top list
* Weekly jobless claims unexpectedly fall last week
* Dow, S&P flat; Nasdaq up 0.2 pct
By Rodrigo Campos
NEW YORK, Aug 9 (Reuters) - The Dow and S&P500 were little
changed on Thursday as hopes of European Central Bank action to
tackle the bloc's crisis grew stale, while Cisco Systems led the
Nasdaq higher after bullish research on its stock.
Chinese economic data kept alive talk that central banks
will intervene to support the global economy as annual growth in
factory output slowed to its weakest in more than three years in
July while annual consumer price inflation hit a 30-month low.
The S&P 500, up for five weeks and also near four-year
highs, has risen as investors bet central banks, including the
Federal Reserve, will soon act in support of a stalling global
"The Europeans indicated their strong support but have yet
to take any actual action, the Fed has indicated strong support
but is yet to take any action, leaving professional investors
fearful of shorting the market," said Rick Meckler, president of
LibertyView Capital Management in New York.
"There's individual stock stories that will continue to
impact industries, but absent that there really isn't much to
Cisco Systems Inc shares rose 2.9 percent to $17.65
after Goldman Sachs added the network equipment maker's stock to
its conviction buy list and Piper Jaffray raised its Cisco
rating to "overweight."
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 5.59 points, or
0.04 percent, to 13,181.23. The S&P 500 Index added 0.72
point, or 0.05 percent, to 1,402.94. The Nasdaq Composite
gained 5.91 points, or 0.20 percent, to 3,017.16.
The S&P could close at its highest since early May and
Europe's FTSEurofirst 300 was at a four-month high.
Beauty products maker Elizabeth Arden forecast 2013
profit above estimates on stronger sales and its shares jumped
19.8 percent to $46.69.
Nestle, the world's biggest food group, said
first-half results beat expectations and it expects pressure
from the high prices of basic foodstuffs to ease in the second
half of the year. Its shares, traded in Switzerland, rose 3
Shares of Robbins & Myers jumped 26.9 percent to
$59.40 after National Oilwell Varco said it will buy
Robbins & Myers for $2.54 billion in cash.
(Editing by Dave Zimmerman)