U.S. stocks ended the day lower Thursday, on course to give back some of the market’s gains from the day before. Financial, energy and technology stocks were among the biggest decliners, while phone companies, real estate and health care stocks edged higher. The latest losses came as investors looked ahead to Friday, the start of several weeks of companies reporting their latest quarterly results.
ON WALL STREET: At the close, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 63.3 points, about 0.3 percent, at 19,891. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index gave back 4.9 points, about 0.2 percent, to 2,270.4. The Nasdaq composite declined 16.2 points, about 0.3 percent, to 5,547.5.
OIL PRICES: As markets closed, benchmark crude oil was up 81 cents at $53.06 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. In London on the Intercontinental Exchange Europe, Brent crude, which is used to price oil sold internationally, rose 96 cents to $56.06 a barrel.
BANK WOES: Banks and other financial companies were down as the yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell. Lower yields mean lower interest rates on loans and lower profits for banks. Among the day’s losers were JPMorgan Chase, Cincinnati Financial, PNC Financial Services Group and Goldman Sachs Group.
BOND PRICES: At the close, the yield on the 10-year Treasury was 2.36 percent, down from 2.37 percent late Wednesday.
TRUMP-BRED ANXIETY: Trump’s first news conference in nearly six months was an anticlimax, with scant details on his plans for infrastructure spending and tax reforms. Trump attacked U.S. intelligence services and big pharmaceutical companies, instead of outlining his platform.
THE QUOTE: “It is what he didn’t mention — fiscal stimulus — that worries market participants. The U.S. dollar rally was based on the assumption that Trump’s administration will push through a massive infrastructure building and fiscal stimulus package, which will lead to higher inflation in the future,” said Margaret Yang Yan, a market analyst with CMC Markets in Singapore. “The slump in the U.S. dollar index last night indicated that assumption is now unwinding because the president-elect never even mentioned that key word ‘stimulus.’ ”