Major Averages Turn Negative As Initial Buying Interest Fades

Stocks have moved to the downside over the course of the trading session on Tuesday after failing to sustain an initial upward move. The major averages have pulled back well off their early highs, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq showing a notable drop.

Currently, the major averages are all in negative territory. While the Nasdaq is down 89.16 points or 1 percent at 8,641.00, the Dow is down 13.63 points or 0.1 percent at 24,120.15 and the S&P 500 is down 7.81 points or 0.3 percent at 2,870.67.

The initial strength on Wall Street partly reflected continued optimism that the U.S. is seeing “the light at the end of the tunnel” of the coronavirus pandemic.

A number of states such as George, South Carolina and Colorado have already stated reopening, while other states like New York have announced plans to begin reopening in the coming weeks.

President Donald Trump’s administration has also unveiled a plan to ramp up testing, which experts have said is the most important step toward reopening the economy.

Buying interest waned shortly after the start of trading, however, inspiring some traders to cash in on recent strength in the markets.

The initial jump lifted the major averages to their best intraday levels in well over a month, which may have led some traders to believe the recent recovery has been overdone.

Notable declines by Amazon (AMZN), Google parent Alphabet (GOOGL), Facebook (FB) and Apple (AAPL) are weighing on the tech-heavy Nasdaq.

On the U.S. economic front, the Conference Board released a report showing consumer confidence deteriorated significantly in the month of April.

The Conference Board said its consumer confidence index plunged to 86.9 in April after tumbling to a downwardly revised 118.8 in March. Economists had expected the index to plummet to 90.0 from the 120.0 originally reported for the previous month.

Sector News

Despite the pullback by the broader markets, substantial strength remains visible among housing stocks, resulting in a 5 percent spike by the Philadelphia Housing Sector Index.

Homebuilder D.R. Horton (DHI) is posting a standout gain after reporting fiscal second quarter results that exceeded analyst estimates.

Oil service stocks also continue to see considerable strength on the day, driving the Philadelphia Oil Service Index up by 3.8 percent.

The rally by oil service stocks comes even though the price of crude oil has turned lower on the day, with crude for June delivery sliding $0.57 to $12.21 a barrel.

Tobacco, banking and commercial real estate stocks are also seeing continued strength on the day, while biotechnology stocks have shown a notable move to the downside.

Reflecting the weakness in the biotech sector, the NYSE Arca Biotechnology Index is slumping by 2 percent after reaching a record intraday high.

Healthcare, software and pharmaceutical have also come under pressure over the course of the session, contributing to the pullback by the broader markets.

Other Markets

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region turned in a mixed performance during trading on Tuesday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index edged down by 0.1 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index jumped by 1.2 percent.

Meanwhile, the major European markets all moved to the upside on the day. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index spiked by 1.9 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index surged up by 1.4 percent and 1.3 percent, respectively.

In the bond market, treasuries are regaining ground following the pullback seen in the previous session. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is down by 4.1 basis points at 0.615 percent.

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