The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 64.35 points, or 0.20 percent, to 31,522.75. The S&P 500 decreased 2.24 points, or 0.06 percent, to 3,932.59. The Nasdaq Composite Index fell 47.97 points, or 0.34 percent, to 14,047.50.
Eight of the 11 primary S&P 500 ended in red, with utilities down 1.14 percent, leading the laggards. Energy rose 2.26 percent, the best-performing group.
U.S.-listed Chinese companies traded mostly higher with seven of the top 10 stocks by weight in the S&P U.S. Listed China 50 index ending the day on an upbeat note.
On the data front, the Empire State manufacturing index, a key metric to gauge business activity growth in New York State, climbed to 12.1 in February, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York reported Tuesday. Economists had expected a reading of 5.9, according to a survey by The Wall Street Journal. Any reading above zero indicates improving conditions.
U.S. markets were closed on Monday in observance of Presidents' Day. For the week ending Friday, the Dow finished up 1 percent, the S&P 500 added 1.2 percent, and the Nasdaq Composite registered a 1.7-percent weekly climb.