U.S. stocks finished barely lower Friday as energy companies fell with oil prices and a 10-day rally for technology companies came to an end. But Wall Street mostly avoided the sharp losses that hit European stocks.
The price of U.S. crude oil fell 2.5 percent and pulled energy stocks lower. Technology companies slipped, ending their longest winning streak in more than two years.
Investors bought government bonds in the United States and Europe, which sent prices higher and yields lower. Investors who wanted income bought dividend stocks.
European stocks took sharp losses after Reuters reported the European Central Bank will consider paring back its stimulus programs in late October.
“Europe is the economy that makes people the most nervous,” said JJ Kinahan, chief market strategist at TD Ameritrade. “It’s one that is still being treated with caution.”
The Standard & Poor’s 500 index slipped 0.91 of a point to 2,472.54. The Dow Jones industrial average dipped 31.71 points to 21,580.07. Earlier it shed as many as 108 points. The Nasdaq composite lost 2.25 points to 6,387.75. — AP