U.S. stocks drifted lower on Wednesday amid worries about soaring inflation, global economic slowdown and prospects of tighter policy measures by the central bank.
Lowering of global growth forecasts by the World Bank and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development weighed as well. Higher treasury yields too caused the market’s decline.
The major averages all ended notably lower. The Dow ended with a loss of 269.24 points or 0.81 percent at 32,910.90 after staying in the red right through the day’s session. The S&P 500 closed lower by 44.91 points or 1.08 percent at 4,115.77.
The Nasdaq, which climbed to 12,235.78 after a weak start, turned weak past noon and finally ended the session with a loss of 88.96 points or 0.73 percent at 12,086.27.
Investors, in addition to digesting the reports from the World Bank and the OECD, looked ahead to the crucial inflation data, due on Friday.
Shares of Intel Inc. dropped more than 5 percent after analysts cautioned that the chipmaker could pre-announce weaker-than-expected earnings for the second quarter.
Goldman Sachs, Cisco Systems, Honeywell International, JP Morgan Chase, American Express, IBM, P&G and Merck shed 1 to 2 percent.
Netflix, Moderna Inc, Biogen and Tesla were some of the prominent gainers in the session.
On the economic front, data showed wholesale inventories in the US increased 2.2 percent from a month earlier to $861.8 billion in April of 2022, slightly above an initial estimate of 2.1 percent and after a 2.7 percent rise in the previous month.
In overseas trading, Asian stocks logged cautious gains on Wednesday despite growing worries that aggressive central bank policy tightening will dent global growth.
The major European markets closed lower on Wednesday, extending recent weakness, as worries about economic slowdown, soaring inflation and prospects of tighter monetary policy from central banks continued to weigh on sentiment.
Downward revisions in global growth forecasts by the World Bank and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development hurt sentiment.
The pan European Stoxx 600 drifted down 0.57 percent. Germany’s DAX slid 0.76 percent, France’s CAC 40 shed 0.8 percent, and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 edged down 0.08 percent.
In commodities trading, West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for July ended higher by $2.70 or about 2.3 percent at $122.11 a barrel, hitting a 3-week high, amid expectations of increased demand and tighter supplies.
Gold futures for August settled at $1,856.50 an ounce, up $4.40 or about 0.25 percent from the previous close.
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