Friday, July 30, 2021

US stocks: S&P 500 slides below closely watched threshold

Monday, February 29, 2016, 23:08
This news item was posted in Business category and has 0 Comments so far.

Wall Street ended lower on Monday, falling out of lockstep with oil prices as energy and healthcare shares lost ground. US indexes gave up early gains despite a 3 per cent rally in US oil prices. Stocks and oil have been strongly correlated in recent months as crude prices tanked to decade lows, and their movements in opposite directions during the session was notable to investors. Following gains last week, technical trading dominated the action as the S&P 500 fell below its 50-day moving average, a sign seen as bad for sentiment. The index broke above the average on Thursday for the first time this year. “If stocks rally up to a declining 50-day average, people will sell against that,” said Michael Matousek, head trader at US Global Investors Inc in San Antonio. “From a psychological standpoint, you have that overhead resistance at that level.” Nine of the 10 major S&P sectors fell, led by a 1.58 per cent decline in the healthcare sector, with Amgen Inc down 3.60 per cent. The energy index fell 1.16 per cent despite a 3 per cent increase in the price of US oil amid signs that a 20-month selloff could be hitting bottom. The S&P utilities index was the lone gainer, up 0.2 per cent and helped by a 1.34 per cent increase in Edison International. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.74 per cent to 16,516.5 points and the S&P 500 lost 0.81 per cent to 1,932.22. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.71 per cent to 4,557.95. For the month, the Dow rose 0.3 per cent, the S&P 500 lost 0.4 per cent and the Nasdaq lost 1.2 per cent. Strong data, including improving consumer spending, released last week suggested the US economy was recovering better than expected, raising expectations that the Federal Reserve will hike interest rates this year. After the bell, Workday fell 1 per cent as the cloud-computing company reported a bigger quarterly net loss, hurt by higher spending on sales, marketing and product development. Shares of Endo International slumped 21 per cent after the pharmaceutical company’s revenue forecast missed estimates. Valeant tumbled 18.41 per cent after the Canadian drugmaker said its chief executive would return from medical leave and it delayed the release of its quarterly results. Icahn Enterprises rose 3.68 per cent after the activist investor offered to buy the rest of Federal Mogul . Shares of the auto parts maker soared 45.78 per cent. Although the main indexes closed lower, advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1,593 to 1,453. On the Nasdaq, 1,545 issues fell and 1,283 advanced. The S&P 500 index showed seven new 52-week highs and two new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 38 new highs and 46 lows. About 8.0 billion shares changed hands on US exchanges, above the 8.9 billion daily average for the past 20 trading days, according to Thomson Reuters data.

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