NEW YORK -- Stock prices pulled back yesterday from their record levels in active trading.
The Dow Jones industrial average lost 8.95 points, to close at 3,249.55.
Volume on the New York Stock Exchange grew to 336.2 million, from 312.8 million on Wednesday, making it the eighth-most-active day ever.
Trading was at its highest since Oct. 16, 1989, when volume totaled 416.3 million shares.
Robert C. Walberg, an equity analyst at MMS International, cited the growing stock volume and the softness in the bond market as indications that a good deal of bond money was shifting into equities.
Gaining issues slightly outnumbered losing ones, but the Big Board composite index fell 1.3 points, to 230.55.
The Standard & Poor's index of 500 stocks fell 2.56 points, to 418.21, and the American Stock Exchange index finished at 413.77, down 0.53 point.
NASDAQ trading was brisk, with the composite index falling 3.48 points, to 627.34. The Russell 2,000 index of small company stocks barely edged up, gaining 0.10 point, to 204.39.
Stocks began the morning in decline, fueled by investor nervousness over sharp selloffs in drug stocks, which led the market all last year. The market later rallied, with investors still shifting to cyclicals and showing a preference for stocks over the relatively low interest rates in the fixed-income market.