US STOCKS-Wall St little changed; oil drop weighs on energy shares

Last Updated: Wed, Dec 27, 2017 21:00 hrs

* Oil prices fall from 2015 highs, U.S. crude at $59.53/bbl

* China imports fuel copper's ascent to 3-1/2 year high

* Tesla down on KeyBanc's lowered est for Model 3 deliveries

* Indexes up: Dow 0.02 pct, S&P 0.06, Nasdaq 0.07 pct (Updates to open)

By Sruthi Shankar

Dec 27 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were little changed in morning trading on Wednesday, with gains in healthcare and technology stocks helping offset losses in energy shares.

Oil prices fell after hitting a near two-and-a-half year high in the previous session, pressuring the S&P energy index , which fell 0.1 percent.

ConocoPhillips dropped 1.2 percent and Chevron fell 0.3 percent.

Technology shares, including those of Facebook and Nvidia, gained ground on Wednesday. The sector was dragged down on Tuesday by losses in Apple's shares following a report on tepid iPhone X demand.

Trading activity was muted in the holiday-shortened week between Christmas and New Year.

Commodity prices were in the spotlight after copper prices hit three-and-a-half-year highs after a rise in China's imports in November.

"People are using copper and oil prices as a precursor to signal that the U.S. economy is strengthening," said Robert Pavlik, chief investment strategist at SlateStone Wealth in New York.

At 9:38 a.m. ET (1438 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 5.36 points, or 0.02 percent, at 24,751.57 and the S&P 500 was up 1.61 points, or 0.06 percent, at 2,682.11.

The Nasdaq Composite was up 4.69 points, or 0.07 percent, at 6,940.94.

Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer rose about half a percent each, lifting the S&P healthcare sector by 0.22 percent.

Tesla shares fell 0.75 percent after brokerage KeyBanc lowered it estimates for Model 3 deliveries to roughly 5,000 units from 15,000 units for the fourth quarter.

Shares of wireless-charging technology developer Energous Corp soared about 85 percent after it got certification for its wireless charging transmitter.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1,341 to 1,137. On the Nasdaq, 1,345 issues rose and 953 fell. (Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva)

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