US Stocks Fall Broadly Friday

(AP) -- Stocks gave up an early gain and turned lower Friday, remaining on track for weekly losses in this holiday-shortened week.

The S&P 500 fell 0.2% as of 11:22 a.m. Eastern and is on track for a weekly loss of 1.2% and its fifth consecutive loss.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, slipped 140 points, or 0.4%, to 34,724 and the Nasdaq composite fell 1%.

A mix of health care companies, banks and other financial firms led the benchmark S&P 500 lower. Communication and technology stocks rose and helped temper some of the broader market's losses.

Stocks have traded in a narrow range for several weeks as most investors are sitting on the sidelines waiting to get a fuller understanding of where the economy is headed and how the pandemic is impacting corporations.

Investors got a negative piece of inflation data on Friday. Inflation at the wholesale level climbed 8.3% last month from August 2020, the biggest annual gain since the Labor Department started calculating the 12-month number in 2010.

The Federal Reserve's policymakers have repeatedly said they believe inflation this year would be temporary and is a result of the economy recovering from the pandemic. However persistently high inflation could force the Fed's hand to start pulling back on its bond-buying program and low interest rate policy sooner than anticipated.

The bond market had a mild reaction to the inflation data, a possible sign that investors continue to agree with the Fed's outlook. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 1.33% from 1.30%.

The pandemic remains in the forefront of investors' minds, as hospitals fill up in the South and other parts of the country. President Joe Biden announced Thursday that companies with more than 100 employees would be required to have their employees vaccinated or do weekly testing, an announcement big companies have been willing to embrace.

Industries that have been struggling greatly through the pandemic and are relying on a steady recovery have been struggling COVID-19 cases rise with the highly contagious delta variant. Airlines slumped, with American Airlines shedding 4.6% and Delta Air Lines falling 2.6%.

Elsewhere, several companies made solid gains on a mix of news. Restaurant and arcade operator Dave & Buster's jumped 8% after reporting solid financial results. Endo International surged 45% after settling opioid cases with the state of New York and two large counties in a $50 million deal.

Oil prices jumped 2.2%, but energy stocks were mixed.