A wobbly trading day on Wall Street left stocks slightly lower on Tuesday, pulling the market to all-time highs it had reached a day earlier.
The S&P 500 ended a three-day winning streak, slipping 0.1% after swinging between small gains and losses for much of the afternoon. Stocks in the benchmark were almost evenly split between winners and losers. Tech and healthcare stocks were behind much of the decline.
The S&P 500 lost 3.97 points to 4,073.94. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 96.95 points, or 0.3%, to 33,430.24. Both indices hit record highs on Monday. The high-tech Nasdaq composite lost 7.21 points, or 0.05%, to 13,698.38.
Small business shares, which topped the broader market this year, also fell. The Russell 2000 Small Business Index fell 5.73 points, or 0.3%, to 2,259.15. The index is up 14.4% this year while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 8.5%.
Financials fell as bond yields eased. This has countered the broader gains of companies that depend on continued economic growth to recover. Meanwhile, oil prices have risen.
Many fluctuations within the market are occurring as Wall Street assesses the health and speed of the economic recovery.
Many sectors and businesses have been heavily supported by the pandemic, as vaccine distribution helps businesses reopen and government stimulus measures help consolidate businesses in the meantime. Even when this shift occurs, the technology and other stocks that have benefited from the closings still look fundamentally sound, said Jeff Buchbinder, equity strategist at LPL Financial.
“We see this battle happening here in the markets every day,” he said. “This will generate unsubscribing. “
Bond yields have fallen. The 10-year Treasury yield slipped to 1.65% from 1.72% Monday night. This has helped banks down as they rely on higher yields to charge more lucrative interest on loans. JPMorgan Chase fell 0.7%.
Investors weighed in concerns about rising inflation as the economy grows, as well as expectations that retailers and other service sector stocks will make solid gains as the world moves past the pandemic and returns to a semblance of normalcy.
Retailers, cruise lines and hotel operators were among the winners on Tuesday. The spread increased by 2.5%, Norwegian Cruise Line by 4.6% and Wynn Resorts by 4%. Alaska Air Group climbed 3.7% and Delta Air Lines closed up 2.8%.
The International Monetary Fund expects global economic growth to accelerate this year as vaccine distribution increases and the world rebounds. The 190-country lending agency said it expects the global economy to grow 6% in 2021, down from 5.5% it forecast in January. It would be the fastest expansion in agency records dating back to 1980.
The US Department of Labor said job vacancies reached their highest level on record in February, a harbinger of healthy hires and a sign of hope for those looking for work. The upbeat report follows encouraging news last week on job growth and improvements in the service sector, which is one of the areas of the economy hardest hit by the pandemic.
Elsewhere, Swiss bank Credit Suisse said it expects a loss of $ 4.7 billion from a default by a US hedge fund. Two senior executives leave the bank. Credit Suisse has also suspended a share buyback program and reduced its dividend. The bank’s U.S.-listed shares, which already fell sharply last week after the first news of the default, rose 0.9% on Tuesday.