Wall Street snaps 4-day gaining streak, but ends week higher

BY    2013-04-14 18:19:59

  NEW YORK, April 12 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks snapped a four-day winning streak on downbeat economic data Friday from Thursday's all-time highs, but still ended the week in positive territory.

  The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.08 point, or less than 0.01 percent, to 14,865.06 points. The S&P 500 Index ticked down 4.52 points, or 0.28 percent, to 1,588.85 points. The Nasdaq Composite Index lost 5.21 points, or 0.16 percent, to 3,294. 95 points.

  For the week, the Dow rose 2.06 percent, and the S&P 500 advanced 2.29 percent while the Nasdaq was up 2.84 percent.

  The main stock indices opened lower after the Commerce Department reported on Friday that U.S. retail sales declined 0.4 percent in March following a 1-percent gain in the previous month. Consumer spending accounts for approximately 70 percent of the U.S. economy.

  Wall Street lost more steam after a disappointing consumer confidence report. The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan preliminary index of consumer sentiment declined to 72.3 in April from 78.6 in March.

  In addition, the U.S. Producer Price Index fell 0.6 percent in March, the biggest drop in 10 months, the Labor Department said Friday. However, the so-called core PPI excluding volatile food and energy advanced 0.2 percent.

  Also according to the Commerce Department, U.S. business inventories in February increased 0.1 percent. The lower-than- expected gain signaled that restocking of warehouses may contribute less to the ongoing recovery of the world's largest economy.

  The CBOE Volatility Index, considered the fear gauge of Wall Street, dropped 1.47 percent to 12.06.

  Among the main sectors in S&P 500, energy and materials lagged due to weak commodity prices.

  Two of the biggest U.S. banks posted first-quarter profits that topped market expectations before the opening bell to kick off a bank earnings season.

  JP Morgan Chase, the largest U.S. bank by assets, reported a net income of 6.5 billion U.S. dollars for the first quarter, up 33 percent from the year-ago period. Wells Fargo, the largest U.S. home lender, also reported a record first-quarter net income of 5. 2 billion dollars, up 22 percent year on year.

  But both shares of the two banks dropped, with JP Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo losing 0.61 percent and 0.80 percent respectively.

  In other markets, light, sweet crude for May delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Friday lost 2.22 dollars, or 2.37 percent, to settle at 91.29 dollars a barrel, a one-month low, as poor U.S. economic data dampened oil demand.

  Brent crude for May delivery was down 1.16 dollars, or 1.11 percent, to close at 103.11 dollars a barrel.

  Gold future for June delivery on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange on Friday tumbled 63.5 dollars, or 4.06 percent, to settle at 1,501.4 dollars per ounce, the lowest level since July 2011. Gold plummeted over 20 percent from its record high set in September 2011, hit by Cyprus' plan to sell gold reserves as part of its bailout.

  The U.S. dollar strengthened moderately against most of major currencies on Friday despite disappointing economic data out of the United States.

Related News