US Stock Indexes Edge Lower in Early Trade

U.S. stock indexes edged lower in early trading Thursday, pulling back slightly from the market’s latest record highs. Losses by health care stocks and other sectors were outweighing gains by technology companies. Energy stocks also fell as crude oil prices declined.

KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 3 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,799 as of 10:14 a.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones industrial average slid 49 points, or 0.2 percent, to 26,065. The Nasdaq lost 20 points, or 0.3 percent, to 7,278. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gave up 3 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,583. The Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq hit record highs on Wednesday.

UNDER THE WEATHER: Health care stocks were down in early trading. Biogen slid $5.82, or 1.7 percent, to $339.05.

ROUGH QUARTER: Alcoa tumbled 6.6 percent after the company reported a wider loss in the fourth quarter. Alcoa said it will freeze its pension and move some employees to a defined contribution retirement plan starting in 2021 as it looks to cut costs. The stock lost $3.74 to $53.25.

MIXED RESULTS: Banks were moving after several of them reported quarterly results. Morgan Stanley gained 0.7 percent after its latest earnings beat Wall Street’s expectations. The stock rose 38 cents to $55.73. Bank of NY Mellon and Key Corp were trading lower after their latest quarterly snapshots. Bank of NY Mellon lost $2.36, or 4.1 percent, to $55.54, while Key declined 43 cents, or 2 percent, to $20.83.

RESILIENT TECH: Technology stocks, one of the biggest gainers this year, continued to notch gains. Advanced Micro Devices rose 41 cents, or 3.4 percent, to $12.59.

CHECKING IN: La Quinta rose 2.6 percent after Wyndham Worldwide agreed to buy its hotel franchise and management business. Shares in La Quinta added 51 cents to $19.56. Wyndham gained $6.12, or 5.2 percent, to $123.25.

ENERGY: Benchmark crude rose fell 24 cents to $63.73 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, fell 35 cents to $69.03 a barrel.

The decline in oil prices weighed on some energy sector stocks. Kinder Morgan slid 71 cents, or 3.6 percent, to $18.86.

BOND YIELDS: Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 2.60 percent from 2.59 percent late Wednesday.

CURRENCIES: The dollar fell to 110.92 yen from 111.13 yen on Wednesday. The euro rose to $1.2257 from $1.2235.

BITCOIN: The price of bitcoin added 7.7 percent to $11,999, according to the tracking site CoinDesk. Bitcoin futures on the Cboe Futures Exchange rose 10.3 percent to $11,930. The futures allow investors to make bets on the future price of bitcoin.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: Major stock indexes in Europe were mixed. Germany’s DAX rose 0.5 percent, while France’s CAC 40 edged 0.1 percent lower. Britain’s FTSE 100 was down 0.4 percent. In Asia, Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 finished 0.4 percent lower. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.4 percent after China reported 6.9 percent economic growth in 2017, faster than expected. South Korea’s Kospi inched up less than 0.1 percent.

No Comment