US STOCKS-Materials lift S&P 500 in volatile session, Dow lower
* Dow Chemical jumps on Third Point stake
* Verizon, Travelers and J&J all fall after results
* 70 S&P 500 companies to report earnings this week
* Dow off 0.3 pct, S&P up 0.2 pct, Nasdaq up 0.5 pct
By Ryan Vlastelica
NEW YORK, Jan 21 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks mostly rose on Tuesday, putting the S&P 500 on pace to snap a two-session decline as material stocks rallied, though the Dow fell on disappointing earnings by three of its components.
Trading was volatile, with the S&P fluctuating between positive and negative territory throughout the session, while the Dow moved between modest and solid losses and the Nasdaq swung between modest and strong gains.
The S&P materials index rose 0.9 percent as the best performing of the 10 major S&P indexes, led by a 4.9 percent gain in Dow Chemical to $45.18. Activist investor and hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb has taken a stake in the company and wants it to spin off its petrochemical arm.
In addition, Alcoa Inc jumped 8.1 percent to $12.28 following an upgrade to "overweight" from JPMorgan. The firm also lifted its price target on the aluminum company to $15 from $9. Continued...