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U.S. Stocks Remain Mostly Lower In Mid-Day Trading

wallstreet sept13 02mar21 lt

Stocks remain mostly lower in mid-day trading on Tuesday after coming under pressure over the course of the morning. The tech-heavy Nasdaq has shown a steep drop on the day, while the Dow and the S&P 500 are posting more moderate losses.

The major averages have climbed off their worst levels in recent trading but remain in the red. The Dow is down 96.36 points or 0.3 percent at 31,439.15, the Nasdaq is down 145.89 points or 1.1 percent at 13,442.94 and the S&P 500 is down 20.81 points or 0.5 percent at 3,881.01.

Profit taking has contributed to the pullback on Wall Street, with some traders cashing in on the strong gains in the previous session.

The S&P 500 posted its biggest single-day gain since last June on Monday, while the Dow and the Nasdaq also moved sharply higher following the starkly mixed performance seen last Friday.

The weakness on the day comes despite a continued decrease by the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which is moving lower for the third straight session.

The ten-year yield spiked above 1.6 percent last Thursday, raising concerns about the outlook for interest rates despite the Federal Reserve's assurances monetary policy will remain unchanged for the foreseeable future.

Semiconductor stocks have moved sharply lower over the course of the trading session, dragging the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index down by 2.4 percent.

Considerable weakness has also emerged among oil service stocks, as reflected by the 1.9 percent slump by the Philadelphia Oil Service Index. The index has turned lower after reaching its best intraday level in a year.

The weakness among oil service stocks comes amid a modest decrease by the price of crude oil, with crude for April delivery edging down $0.16 to $60.44 a barrel.

Biotechnology, networking and commercial real estate stocks are also seeing notable weakness on the day, moving lower along with most of the other major sectors.

Meanwhile, gold stocks have bucked the downtrend, resulting in a 3.4 percent spike by the NYSE Arca Gold Bugs Index. The index is bouncing off its lowest closing level in over ten months.

The rebound by gold stocks comes amid an increase by the price of the precious metal, as gold for April delivery is climbing $8.20 to $1,731.60 an ounce.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower during trading on Tuesday. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index slid by 0.9 percent, while China's Shanghai Composite Index slumped by 1.2 percent.

Meanwhile, the major European markets moved to the upside over the course of the session. While the German DAX Index edged up by 0.2 percent, the French CAC 40 Index rose by 0.3 percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index climbed by 0.4 percent.

In the bond market, treasuries have climbed firmly into positive territory as the day has progressed. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is down by 3.9 basis points at 1.407 percent.

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