Dow, S&P shut decrease as IBM, Intel weigh in and coronavirus issues mount

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A sign is pictured on Wall Street in front of the New York Stock Exchange in New York City

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From Echo Wang

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Dow ended Friday slightly lower, hurt by losses in blue chip technology from Intel and Intel IBM (NYSE 🙂 on their quarterly results as hopes of a full economic reopening in the coming months faded.

IBM Corp slumped 9.91% and was the biggest drag after missing estimates for quarterly revenue, hurt by a rare drop in revenue in the software unit.

Intel Corp. (NASDAQ 🙂 was down 9.29% as Pat Gelsinger’s post-profit comments indicated that outsourcing was not being widely accepted.

However, losses in technology were offset by gains Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ 🙂 Apple Inc (NASDAQ :), which keeps the declines in major US stock indices in check and raises the Nasdaq slightly.

Energy and finance were the worst performers among the 11 S&P sectors on Friday, while defensive utilities and real estate groups rose.

“Any delay or setback in reopening is likely to create headwinds for the energy sector,” said Andrew Mies, chief investment officer at 6 Meridien in Wichita, Kansas.

“(But) the market is telling you that its confidence in cyclicals is falling right now.”

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq took some losses shortly after the opening bell as data showed US manufacturing activity surprisingly rose to its highest level in more than 13 1/2 years in early January, as opposed to a disappointing one Results at the purchasing manager data in Europe earlier.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 179.03 points, or 0.57%, to 30,996.98, the S&P 500 lost 11.6 points, or 0.30%, to 3,841.47 and the additional 12.15 points, or 0, 09% to 13,543.06.

The volume on the US exchanges was 12.79 billion shares, compared to the average of 12.68 billion for the entire session over the last 20 trading days.

Despite the weakness, the three major indices posted weekly gains, with tech-intensive Nasdaq posting its best weekly performance since Nov. 6, when investors stacked up in Alphabet (NASDAQ 🙂 Inc, Apple Inc and Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ :). pending their earnings reports in the coming weeks.

During the week, the S&P was up 1.94%, the Dow was up 0.59% and the Nasdaq was up 4.19% unofficially.

Some market participants said new COVID-19 variants and hiccups in vaccine rollouts pose short-term risks as stock valuations move closer to levels not seen since the dot-com era.

President Joe Biden said Friday the US economic crisis was deepening and the government must now take important steps to help the struggling Americans.

“The absolute certainty that investors felt a week ago … some of it is slowly disappearing from the market.” Mies added, regarding the decline in the virus and the reopening of the economy.

The Senate Finance Committee unanimously approved Janet Yellen’s appointment as first Secretary of the Treasury, indicating that she will easily gain full Senate approval.

Declining issues outperformed advancing issues on the NYSE by a ratio of 1.00 to 1. On Nasdaq, a ratio of 1.53 to 1 favored the advanced.

The S&P 500 posted 16 new 52-week highs and no new lows. The Nasdaq Composite made 189 new highs and 7 new lows.

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