U.S. Stocks Close Mixed Following Rollercoaster Session

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After moving sharply lower over the three previous sessions, stocks went on a rollercoaster ride over the course of the trading day on Tuesday. The major averages swung wildly back and forth across the unchanged line before ending the session mixed.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq jumped 114.42 points or 1 percent to 11,737.67 and the S&P 500 rose 9.81 points or 0.3 percent to 4,001.05, while the narrower Dow fell 84.96 points or 0.3 percent to 32,160.74, ending the session at its lowest closing level in over a year.

The volatility on the day came as traders continued to debate whether the markets have reached their bottom following the recent sell-off.

Bargain hunting contributed to early strength on Wall Street, as some traders looked to pick up stocks at reduced levels.

Buying interest waned over the course of the morning, however, as traders remain wary about inflation, higher interest rates and the outlook for the global economy.

Stocks continued to fluctuate over the course of the session as traders looked ahead to the release of key inflation data in the coming days.

The Labor Department is due to release its report on consumer price inflation on Wednesday, with the annual rate of price growth expected to slow to 8.1 percent in April from 8.5 percent in March.

The latest snapshot of inflation could impact expectations regarding how aggressively the Federal Reserve plans to raise interest rates.

Sector News

Biotechnology stocks showed a substantial rebound following recent weakness, with the NYSE Arca Biotechnology Index surging by 3.3 percent after ending the previous session at its lowest closing level in over two years.

Bargain hunting also contributed to a bounceback by semiconductor stocks, resulting in a 2.5 percent jump by the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index. The index also ended Monday's trading at a two-year closing low.

Meanwhile, tobacco stocks showed a significant move to the downside on the day, dragging the NYSE Arca Tobacco Index down by 3.5 percent to its lowest closing level in well over a year.

Interest rate-sensitive commercial real estate, housing and utilities stocks also came under pressure along with telecom and banking stocks.

Other Markets

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower on Tuesday, although China's Shanghai Composite Index bucked the downtrend and jumped by 1.1 percent. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index slid by 0.6 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index sank by 1.8 percent.

Meanwhile, the major European markets moved back to the upside following recent weakness. While the German DAX Index jumped by 1.2 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index rose by 0.5 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively.

In the bond market, treasuries extended the rebound seen over the course of the previous session. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, slid 8.6 basis points to 2.993 percent.

Looking Ahead

Trading on Wednesday is likely to be driven by reaction to the Labor Department's report on consumer price inflation in the month of April.

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