STOCKS

U.S. stocks closed lower on Thursday, capping the worst year for the market since 2008.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index ended essentially flat for the year after the day's modest losses nudged it into the red for 2015. Even factoring in dividends, the index eked out a far smaller return than in 2014.

The Dow Jones industrial average also closed out the year with a loss. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite fared better, delivering a gain for the year.

"It's a lousy end to a pretty lousy year," said Edward Campbell, portfolio manager for QMA, a unit of Prudential Investment Management. "A very unrewarding year."

Trading was lighter than usual on Thursday ahead of the New Year's Day holiday. Technology stocks were among the biggest decliners, while energy stocks eked out a tiny gain thanks to a rebound in crude oil and natural gas prices.

The Dow ended the day down 178.84 points, or 1 percent, to

YEAR-END CHARTS

Find two full pages of year-end stock and mutual fund information on Pages 2D and 3D.

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