U.S. Stocks Close Lower On Growth Worries

U.S. stocks closed lower on Tuesday, after posting some strong gains last week. The major averages all ended in negative territory, although the Nasdaq managed to see a few brief spells above the flat line.

The Dow ended with a loss of 195.74 points or 0.56 percent at 34,641.97. The S&P 500 settled lower by 18.94 points or 0.42 percent at 4,496.83, while the Nasdaq finished with a marginal loss of 10.86 points or 0.08 percent at 14,020.95.

Concerns about the outlook for global economy following the release of disappointing Chinese and European data weighed on the market.

A firm dollar and higher Treasury yields hurt as well.

Chinese services activity expanded at the slowest pace in eight months in August, a private-sector survey showed earlier today.

Business activity in the euro zone weakened further in August as the economic downturn extended from manufacturing to the services sector.

HCOB’s final Composite Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), compiled by S&P Global, dropped to 46.7 in August from July’s 48.6, marking the lowest level since November 2020.

On the U.S. economic front, the Commerce Department released a report showing a significant pullback in factory orders in the month of July.

The Commerce Department said factory orders tumbled by 2.1 percent in July after surging by 2.3 percent in June. Economists had expected factory orders to plunge by 2.6 percent.

The Institute for Supply Management is scheduled to release its report on U.S. service sector activity in the month of August on Wednesday.

The ISM’s services PMI is expected to edge down to 52.4 in August from 52.7 in July, although a reading above 50 would still indicate growth in the sector.

The Energy sector saw some brisk buying as oil prices climbed higher after Russia and Saudi Arabia decided to extend their voluntary production cuts to the end of this year.

Walgreens Boots Alliance dropped 2.7 percent. Nike, Merck, Caterpillar, Verizon, Home Depot, Honeywell International, Visa, P&G, Salesforce, JP Morgan and Amgen lost 1 to 2 percent.

Microsoft gained about 1.5 percent. Meta Platforms surged 1.3 percent. Chevron, United Health and IBM also closed higher. Alphabet and Apple edged up marginally.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower on Tuesday. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index plunged by 2.1 percent and China’s Shanghai Composite Index slid by 0.7 percent, although Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index bucked the downtrend and rose by 0.3 percent.

The major European markets also moved to the downside on the day. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index ended down 0.2 percent, Germany’s DAX and France’s CAC 40 both ended lower by 0.34 percent. The pan European Stoxx 600 ended down 0.23 percent.

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