clearn.png
Monday January 20th, 2020 7:16AM

Major US stock indexes veer broadly lower in choppy trading

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

A day of choppy trading on Wall Street ended Monday with stocks broadly lower as the market extended its losing streak into a fourth week.

Technology stocks, consumer goods makers, health care companies and banks accounted for much of the selling, which accelerated in the last hour of trading, erasing modest gains from midday. Communication services stocks eked out a slight gain, bucking the broader market slide. Crude oil prices edged lower and bond yields rose.

The market is coming off a three-week skid following a mostly discouraging batch of economic data that stoked investors' worries that a slowdown in U.S. economic growth could worsen.

The combination of uncertainty over the costly trade war between the U.S. and China, and the impeachment inquiry drama unfolding in Washington, is likely to continue to drag on the economy and weigh on markets, said Tony Roth, chief investment officer at Wilmington Trust.

"And that's why the markets are treading water right now, waiting to see if another shoe drops," Roth said.

The S&P 500 fell 13.22 points, or 0.4%, at 2,938.79. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 95.70 points, or 0.4%, to 26,478.02. The Nasdaq dropped 26.18 points, or 0.3%, to 7,956.29.

Smaller-company stocks fared slightly better than the rest of the market. The Russell 2000 index slipped 2.91 points, or 0.2%, to 1,497.79.

Bond prices fell, pushing the yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.56% from 1.51% late Friday.

The benchmark S&P 500 index began the day lower, picked up some gains around midday and then veered back into the red by late afternoon.

The wobbly day in the market reflects the cautious approach that investors are taking as they try to gauge how the economy and corporate profits will fare amid the lingering trade war and political uncertainty in Washington.

Last week, the S&P 500 posted its first back-to-back losses of 1% this year as surprisingly weak numbers in surveys of manufacturing and service industries showed the U.S.-China trade war is threatening U.S. economic growth.

Some of those fears were allayed on Friday when a government jobs report showed that employers are still adding jobs at a healthy clip and that the national unemployment rate dropped to a five-decade low.

Still, last week marked the third weekly loss in a row for the broader market as the trade war takes its toll on confidence. Markets have been whipsawed for months by the ups and downs in the dispute.

"Labor has held up fairly OK, but we're definitely decelerating from an economic standpoint, so corporate earnings may reflect that negatively," Roth said. "The biggest drivers of the market are going to be who controls policy in Washington and what the specifics are around the Chinese trade situation."

Envoys from Washington and Beijing are scheduled to meet later this week in their latest bid to put an end to the dispute that is stunting global economic growth and spooking the stock market.

Broadcom led the slide in technology stocks Monday, dropping 1.9%.

Beverage companies fell amid a sell-off in consumer product makers. Constellation Brands slid 2.6% and PepsiCo fell 1.4%. Coca-Cola lost 1.2%.

Several big drugmakers helped pull health care sector stocks lower. Abbott Laboratories gave up 1.2% and Merck & Co. slid 0.7%.

Financial sector stocks also declined, giving up early gains. Progressive dropped 1.5%.

Discovery led the gains in the communication services sector. The stock rose 1.4%.

Fox inched up 0.1% after the company settled a dispute with Dish Network over carriage of Fox's local TV stations and cable sports networks. Dish pulled the broadcast network from 17 markets in September. Shares in Dish gained 0.2%.

ConocoPhillips climbed 2.1% after the energy company raised its quarterly dividend by 38% and will buy back $3 billion of its stock in 2020.

General Motors fell 0.5%. The stock has lost nearly 10% of its value since contract negotiations with the now striking United Auto Workers started to falter. The situation has taken another bad turn as negotiations hit a snag over product commitments for U.S. factories.

Workers were warned by United Auto Workers vice president Terry Dittes on September 6 that bargaining was moving slowly. They moved to picket lines on September 16, crippling the company's factories and accelerating stock losses.

Despite the labor issues, General Motor's stock is still up 3.8% for the year, though that is far behind competitor Ford's 13.7% annual gain.

Benchmark crude oil fell 6 cents to settle at $52.75 a barrel. Brent crude oil, the international standard, slipped 2 cents to close at $58.35 a barrel. Wholesale gasoline was unchanged at $1.57 per gallon. Heating oil climbed 1 cent to $1.90 per gallon. Natural gas fell 5 cents to $2.30 per 1,000 cubic feet.

Gold fell $8.50 to $1,497.70 per ounce, silver fell 8 cents to $17.46 per ounce and copper rose 1 cent to $2.57 per pound.

The dollar rose to 107.28 Japanese yen from 106.87 yen on Friday. The euro weakened to $1.0973 from $1.0984.

Major stock indexes in Europe closed broadly higher. Stocks in Asia ended mixed. Chinese markets are due to reopen on Tuesday after a weeklong break.

___

AP Business Writer Damian J. Troise contributed.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Business, AP Business - Corporate News, AP Business - Economy, AP Business - Financial Markets, AP Business - Industries, AP Business - Utilities
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Court seems ready to require unanimous juries as term opens
The Supreme Court began a potentially contentious election-year term Monday in seeming general agreement that juries in state criminal trials must be unanimous to convict a defendant
3:50PM ( 13 minutes ago )
2 victims of 1944 circus fire exhumed in ID attempt
Authorities have exhumed the bodies of two victims of the 1944 Hartford circus fire in the hopes of determining whether one of them is a woman who is among five people still listed as missing after the tragedy
3:46PM ( 17 minutes ago )
North Korea criticizes upcoming UN Security Council meeting
North Korea is denouncing a scheduled U.N. Security Council discussion of its latest test of an underwater-launched ballistic missile, calling it 'dangerous' and saying it will increase 'our desire to defend our sovereignty'
3:45PM ( 18 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Democrats issue subpoenas to Esper, White House budget chief
House Democrats leading an impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump's dealings with Ukraine have issued subpoenas to Defense Secretary Mark Esper and acting White House budget director Russell Vought
3:29PM ( 34 minutes ago )
US consumer borrowing up $17.9 billion in August
US consumer borrowing up $17.9 billion in August as auto and student loans surged
3:07PM ( 57 minutes ago )
Engineer: Ethiopian Airlines went into records after crash
AP Exclusive: Ethiopian Airlines' former chief engineer says in a whistleblower complaint that the carrier went into maintenance records on a Boeing 737 Max jet a day after it crashed this year, a breach he contends was part of a pattern of corruption
2:57PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Business
Profit, not politics: What some Trump allies did in Ukraine
US Energy Secretary Rick Perry pushed to place someone reputable in Republican circles on the supervisory board of Ukraine's state-owned gas company, person present during meeting at which topic was discussed tells AP
10:45AM ( 5 hours ago )
AP sources: Trump allies sought changes at Ukraine utility
AP sources: Trump and Giuliani allies tried to change the leadership at Ukraine's state-own gas company
7:56AM ( 8 hours ago )
AP sources: Trump allies pressed Ukraine over gas firm
AP sources: 3 Florida businessmen pitched a plan for the state-owned Ukrainian petroleum company to enter into exclusive agreements to buy massive shipments of liquefied gas through corporate entities controlled by a circle of close Trump allies
10:54PM ( 17 hours ago )
AP Business - Corporate News
Stocks erase early losses ahead of U.S-China trade talks
U.S. stocks stabilized in midday trading after an early morning dip as the U.S. and China prepare for their latest round of trade talks
12:28PM ( 3 hours ago )
EU demands UK face Brexit 'realism;' Johnson scrambles
Britain and the European Union remain poles apart on a potential Brexit deal, with the Dutch government telling Britain to offer "more realism and clarity," and U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson urging the bloc to soften its stance
11:55AM ( 4 hours ago )
Trump to sign US-Japan trade deal that benefits farmers
Trump to sign Japan trade deal, recouping what US farmers lost when he axed broader Pacific Rim pact
11:39AM ( 4 hours ago )
AP Business - Economy
Asian shares mixed on US jobs, eyes on China trade talks
Asian shares mixed following OK US jobs report, focus shifts to trade talks
2:52AM ( 13 hours ago )
Hanging on: US sets past aside, wins men's 4x100 gold medal
Hanging on: US sets past aside, wins men's 4x100 gold at worlds
6:20AM ( 1 day ago )
After hurricane devastation, Gardiner wins gold for Bahamas
A month after Hurricane Dorian destroyed houses and livelihoods, Steven Gardiner brings Bahamas a world championship gold
6:04PM ( 2 days ago )
AP Business - Financial Markets
Court seems ready to require unanimous juries as term opens
The Supreme Court began a potentially contentious election-year term Monday in seeming general agreement that juries in state criminal trials must be unanimous to convict a defendant
3:50PM ( 13 minutes ago )
2 victims of 1944 circus fire exhumed in ID attempt
Authorities have exhumed the bodies of two victims of the 1944 Hartford circus fire in the hopes of determining whether one of them is a woman who is among five people still listed as missing after the tragedy
3:46PM ( 17 minutes ago )
North Korea criticizes upcoming UN Security Council meeting
North Korea is denouncing a scheduled U.N. Security Council discussion of its latest test of an underwater-launched ballistic missile, calling it 'dangerous' and saying it will increase 'our desire to defend our sovereignty'
3:45PM ( 19 minutes ago )
3 win Nobel Prize for showing how cells sense low oxygen
Three scientists win the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine for discovering how cells respond to differing oxygen levels, paving the way for promising strategies to fight anemia, cancer and other diseases
3:43PM ( 20 minutes ago )
Profit, not politics: Trump allies sought Ukraine gas deal
A circle of businessmen and Republican donors touted their connections to Trump and Giuliani as they sought to install new management at the top of Ukraine's state-owned gas company
3:41PM ( 23 minutes ago )