Stocks slightly lower as Wall Street winds down quiet week


Americans spent more last month on clothing, electronics and dining out as the economy opened up and there were fewer pandemic-related restrictions.

Associated Press

July 16, 2021 / 08:05 PM IST

Stocks were slightly lower in early trading Friday, despite gains from a handful of big technology companies. The market is slightly lower for the week, as investors wait to see what quarterly earnings season has in store later this month.

The S&P 500 index was down 0.2% as of 10:15 a.m. Eastern. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.2% while the Nasdaq composite was mostly unchanged.

Intel rose 2% after The Wall Street Journal reported that the chipmaker is in talks to buy GlobalFoundries for about $ 30 billion. GlobalFoundries is one of world’s largest chip manufacturers, created when Intel and its rival AMD spun off their manufacturing divisions more than 10 years ago.

Moderna rose 6% after the drugmaker was added to the S&P 500 index, prompting a rush of buying from fund managers who need to keep a portfolio of stocks that replicate the index.

On Thursday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell delivered his second day of testimony before Congress. Powell reiterated that signs of inflation should ease or reverse over time, while acknowledging that the U.S. is in the midst of an unparalleled economic reopening on the heels of a pandemic-induced recession.

Investors got a bit of positive economic news. Americans spent more last month on clothing, electronics and dining out as the economy opened up and there were fewer pandemic-related restrictions.

U.S. retail sales rose a seasonal adjusted 0.6% in June from the month before, the U.S. Commerce Department said Friday. The increase was a surprise to Wall Street analysts, who had expected sales to fall slightly last month.

Most of investors’ attention is turned to next week. While earnings season started this week with several companies reporting, including the nation’s biggest banks, the bulk of the S&P 500 index will report their results next week and the following week. Expectations are high for these companies, with profits in the S&P 500 expected to be up 64% from a year earlier, according to FactSet.

Bond yields were relatively stable. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note was 1.32% up from 1.29% the day before.

Associated Press