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Stocks Move Mostly Lower As Trade Concerns Resurface - U.S. Commentary


Following the mixed performance seen last week, stocks have moved mostly lower in morning trading on Monday. The major averages have all moved to the downside, although selling pressure has remained somewhat subdued.

Currently, the Dow is down 140.58 points or 0.5 percent at 26,602.92, the Nasdaq is down 33.31 points or 0.4 percent at 7,953.65 and the S&P 500 is down 12.71 points or 0.4 percent at 2,916.96.

The weakness on Wall Street comes amid news China has canceled trade talks with the U.S. as tariffs on billions of dollars worth of goods take effect.

Traders seem somewhat reluctant to make more significant moves, however, with the upcoming Federal Reserve meeting keeping some traders on the sidelines.

The Fed is scheduled to announce it latest monetary policy decision on Wednesday and is widely expected to raise interest rates by another quarter point.

The accompanying statement is likely to attract considerable attention along with Fed Chairman Jerome Powell's press conference as traders attempt to gauge the outlook for further rate hikes.

Chemical stocks have shown a significant move to the downside in morning trading, dragging the S&P Chemical Sector Index down by 1.3 percent.

Transportation and commercial real estate stocks are also seeing notable weakness, while strength if visible among gold, energy and biotechnology stocks.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower during trading on Monday, although several major markets were closed for holidays. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index tumbled by 1.6 percent.

The major European markets have also moved to the downside on the day. While the German DAX Index has fallen by 0.5 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index are both down by 0.3 percent.

In the bond market, treasuries have climbed back near the unchanged line after seeing initial weakness. Subsequently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is up by less than a basis point at 3.070 percent.

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