Wall St. posts weekly loss as banks, chipmakers weigh

By Stephen Culp NEW YORK (Reuters) - The S&P 500 ended lower on Friday after a choppy trading session as bank and chipmaker stocks weighed on the index and investors grappled with U.S.-China trade talks. All three major U.S. stock indexes posted a weekly loss as the markets reacted to reports from the U.S.-China trade summit, rising U.S

Reuters May 19, 2018 04:05:07 IST
Wall St. posts weekly loss as banks, chipmakers weigh

Wall St posts weekly loss as banks chipmakers weigh

By Stephen Culp

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The S&P 500 ended lower on Friday after a choppy trading session as bank and chipmaker stocks weighed on the index and investors grappled with U.S.-China trade talks.

All three major U.S. stock indexes posted a weekly loss as the markets reacted to reports from the U.S.-China trade summit, rising U.S. government bond yields and increasing oil prices.

"I think everybody's waiting on some sort of direction on American trade talks that are occurring right now, and there's anxiety about oil prices," said Oliver Pursche, vice chairman and chief market strategist at Bruderman Asset Management in New York.

China denied accounts by some U.S. officials that it had offered a package to slash the U.S. trade deficit by up to $200 billion, but said the consultations were "constructive," in the latest salvo of tit-for-tat messages to emerge from the high-level meeting.

"Markets tend to get over that sort of thing very quickly lately," Pursche said. "You may have a statement that ... impacts sentiment and movements over a half hour or so, but it reverses back because there's so much confusion out there right now."

Boeing Co shares rose on hopes for a reduction in the U.S.-China trade deficit, after an American source said the company would be major beneficiary of a narrowed trade gap. Boeing sells about a fourth of its commercial aircraft to Chinese customers. The plane maker's shares advanced 2.1 percent, helping keep the Dow Jones Industrial Average out of negative territory.

Relatively tariff-immune small-cap stocks continued to outperform, with the Russell 2000 <.RUT> hitting its third straight record closing high.

Yields of U.S. 10-year Treasuries pulled back from near seven-year highs as buyers emerged after a bond sell-off earlier in the week prompted by growing inflation worries.

Although banks typically benefit from higher interest rates, shares of JPMorgan Chase , Citigroup , Bank of America and Wells Fargo were all lower, pulling the S&P Financial index <.SPSY> down 0.9 percent.

Some investors have expressed skepticism that the banking sector has much more room to rise unless loan growth accelerates or regulations slacken considerably.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> was essentially flat, ending the session at 24,715.09, the S&P 500 <.SPX> lost 7.16 points, or 0.26 percent, to 2,712.97 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> dropped 28.13 points, or 0.38 percent, to 7,354.34.

Alphabet Inc stock slid 1.1 percent ahead of an expected story about the tech bellwether on CBS News' "60 Minutes" program this weekend.

Shares of Applied Materials dropped 8.2 percent after the chip equipment maker's weak 2019 forecast added to concerns of softening smartphone demand.

The Philadelphia Semiconductor index <.SOX> ended the session down 1.4 percent, its worst loss since April 19.

Deere & Co helped bolster the industrials sector, jumping 5.7 percent after the company raised its full-year earnings estimate.

Campbell Soup Co fell 12.4 percent after its chief executive officer abruptly stepped down and the company cut its full-year profit forecast, saying it expects higher costs to weigh on margins.

The S&P Energy index <.SPNY> dropped 0.8 percent as crude prices fell. Despite the session's decline, oil still posted its sixth consecutive weekly advance.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a 1.01-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.03-to-1 ratio favored decliners.

The S&P 500 posted 10 new 52-week highs and five new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 144 new highs and 33 new lows.

Volume on U.S. exchanges was 6.18 billion shares, compared with the 6.64 billion-share average for the full session over the last 20 trading days.

(Reporting by Stephen Culp; editing by Jonathan Oatis)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

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