NEW YORK (AP) _ Stocks are mixed as investors try to dig out from a three-week slide.

Technical stocks turned slightly higher while industrials remained lower in midday trading. Nvidia gained 2.6% and Ingersoll-Rand gave up 1.1%.

Communications stocks made the biggest gains, led by AT&T and Google. ConocoPhillips rose 3% and lifted energy stocks after raising its quarterly dividend.

General Motors fell 0.1% after talks aimed at ending a 21-day strike took a turn for the worse.

Utilities and consumer product makers made some of the biggest declines. The sectors are considered safe-play investments that investors favor when they want to reduce risk and stocks to sell off when they have more confidence.