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Stocks slip on stimulus, spending concerns

Traders work on the floor of the NYSE

Traders work on the floor of the NYSE on Monday. Black Friday deals and the long Thanksgiving weekend lured buyers into U.S. automobile showrooms, and analysts say the surge should boost November sales above a strong month last year. (Dec. 2, 2013) Credit: Bloomberg News

Stocks ended with losses yesterday as investors continued to worry about the Federal Reserve winding down its economic stimulus and weak U.S. consumer spending. The Dow Jones industrial average had its first three-day losing streak in two months.

At the close on Wall Street, the Dow was down 94.15 points to 15,914.62. The Standard & Poor's 500 index lost 0.32 percent to 1,795.15 and the Nasdaq composite was off 0.2 percent at 4,037.2.

Three stocks fell for every two that rose on the New York Stock Exchange. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.78 percent.

Companies that depend heavily on consumer spending had some of the biggest losses. Automakers fell despite reporting higher sales for November. Ford fell 2.93 percent to close at $16.56.

Investors are waiting for several economic reports this week that could influence whether the Fed will pare back its $85-billion-a-month bond buying designed to keep interest rates low and stimulate the economy.

On Friday the government releases its monthly job market survey. Economists expect that employers created 180,000 jobs last month while the unemployment rate remained steady at 7.2 percent, according to FactSet, a financial information provider. -- AP

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