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Stocks Moving Mostly Lower In Late Morning Trading - U.S. Commentary

Stocks have moved mostly lower over the course of morning trading on Tuesday, extending the notable downward move seen in the previous session. The major averages have all slid into negative territory after showing a lack of direction earlier in the day.

The weakness that has emerged on Wall Street comes as traders continue to cash in on the recent strength in the markets following last Friday's disappointing jobs report. Uncertainty about the upcoming earnings season has also generated some selling pressure.

Alcoa (AA) is scheduled to release its first quarter results after the close of trading, with the release of results from the aluminum giant seen as the unofficial start of earnings season.

Health insurance stocks have come under pressure on the day, extending the steep downward move seen in the previous session. The Morgan Stanley Healthcare Payor Index is down by 1.6 percent after ending Monday's trading down by 7.2 percent.

Considerable weakness has also emerged among transportation stocks, as reflected by the 1.3 percent loss being posted by the Dow Jones Transportation Average. Overseas Shipholding Group (OSG) and Con-Way (CNW) are turning in two of the sector's worst performances.

Steel, oil service, electronic storage, and healthcare provider stocks are also posting notable losses in late morning trading.

The major averages have seen some further downside in recent trading, hitting new lows for the session. The Dow is down 78.60 points or 0.6 percent at 12,850.99, the Nasdaq is down 11.38 points or 0.4 percent at 3,035.70 and the S&P 500 is down 7.41 points or 0.5 percent at 1,374.79.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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