How major USA stock indexes fared on Thursday

Posted February 04, 2018

Overnight stock price losses accelerated after the U.S. Labor Department reported employment grew more than expected in January with the biggest wage gain in more than 8-1/2 years.

Feb 1 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were lower in late morning trading on Thursday, following a string of lackluster earnings and after the Federal Reserve raised its inflation outlook for the year.

The higher wage growth and potentially higher inflation "might then lead the Federal Reserve to raise their interest rates more rapidly than the market is comfortable with", he told NPR's John Ydstie.

However, stronger-than-expected private sector job data for January and pending home sales data for December renewed investor optimism and helped indices close in green for the first time in the week.

At 10:44 a.m. ET (1544 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 50.26 points, or 0.19 percent, at 26,099.13, the S&P 500 was down 2.77 points, or 0.09 percent, at 2,821.04.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index gave up 30 points, or 1.1 percent, to 2,791.

The S&P 500 health-care sector fell for the second straight session, dropping 1.4%. The Nasdaq climbed 9 points, or 0.1 percent, to 7,411.

Some investors said a positive earnings and economic backdrop remains intact, though concerns about higher inflation and less accommodative central-bank policy have become more pronounced recently. Facebook rose 3.3 percent a day after the social media company posted strong quarter results.

Still, "the movement in stocks since the beginning of the year has been remarkable", she added.

S&P 500 measures the performance of 500 widely held common stocks of large-cap USA companies.

Stocks were lifted earlier by a surge in Boeing (BA.N) which forecast better-than-expected full-year profits and said it expects to deliver a record number of commercial aircraft in 2018, sending its shares up 4.9%.

Elsewhere, the Stoxx Europe 600 swung between small gains and losses and closed down 0.2% following its biggest daily fall of the year.

OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude rose 55 cents to $65.28 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Shares in the maker of KitKat chocolate bars and Twizzlers candy fell $6.56, or 5.9 percent, to $103.77. Brent crude, used to price global oils, declined 16 cents to $68.36 in London.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury climbed to 2.79 percent from 2.71 percent late Wednesday.

The Nasdaq fell 108 points, or 1.5 percent, to 7,278. Japan's Nikkei ended down 0.8% as the yen strengthened against the dollar.

Even on a day when the Dow was down 400 points, the 63% plunge by commercial printer Cenveo Inc (NASDAQ:CVO) caught the eye.