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Wall Street retreats slightly after S&P 500's record run

English.news.cn   2014-02-26 06:52:02

NEW YORK, Feb. 25 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks pulled back modestly Tuesday from a record run of the S&P 500, as a bound of lackluster economic data weighed on the market.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 27.48 points, or 0.17 percent, to 16,179.66. The S&P 500 fell 2.49 points, or 0.13 percent, to 1,845.12. The Nasdaq Composite Index decreased 5.38 points, or 0.13 percent, to 4,287.59.

The S&P 500 missed another chance to set a record closing high a day after the benchmark index touched a record high of 1,858.71 points in intraday trading but closed less than 1 point shy of its all-time closing high of 1,848.38 set on Jan. 15.

The major stock indices posted a seesaw trading session amid tepid economic data, as investors grew hesitant somewhat about continuing to step in and propel the market higher after the recent strong rebound on Wall Street.

U.S. house prices rose 1.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency's House Price Index. This was the tenth consecutive quarterly price increase in the purchase-only, seasonally adjusted index.

Meanwhile, the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices released by S&P Dow Jones Indices showed that U.S. home prices lost momentum in December, with the 10-City Composite remaining relatively unchanged while the 20-City Composite down 0.1 percent for a second consecutive month.

Moreover, U.S. consumer confidence, which increased in January, fell moderately in February, the Conference Board said in a report released Tuesday.

The Consumer Confidence Index stood at 78.1 in February, down from 79.4 in January, the New York-based research organization said in its monthly survey. The fresh figure came in below analysts' expectations of 80.

In corporate news, shares of Home Depot, a Dow component, added 3.99 percent 80.98 U.S. dollars apiece after the largest U.S. home improvement retailer posted better-than-expected quarterly profit and raised its quarterly dividend by 21 percent.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. shares dipped 1.72 percent to 57.03 dollars a share following news that the largest U.S. bank by asset could announce more job cuts in its mortgage business at its annual investor day Tuesday.

Investors are also looking forward to Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen's postponed testimony before the Senate Banking Committee due on Thursday.

In other markets, the U.S. dollar retreated against most major currencies on weak U.S. consumer sentiment and housing data.

In late New York trading, the euro rose to 1.3743 dollars from 1.3735 dollars of the previous session. The greenback bought 102. 17 Japanese yen, lower than 102.47 yen of the previous session.

Oil prices dropped as traders were cautious before the release of U.S. crude stockpiles data. Light, sweet crude for April delivery moved down 99 cents to settle at 101.83 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for April delivery fell 1.13 dollars to close at 109.51 dollars a barrel.

Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose to a four-month high. The most active gold contract for April delivery rose 4.7 dollars, or 0.35 percent, to settle at 1,342.7 dollars per ounce.

Editor: Mu Xuequan
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