US Stocks Led Downward by Techs

US Stocks Led Downward by Techs

(AP) -- Stocks edged lower in morning trading on Wall Street Thursday as technology and communications companies fell broadly.

Trading was choppy. Stocks edged higher in the early going after a surprisingly good retail sales report for August, but then quickly turned lower.

The S&P 500 index fell 0.7% as of 10:20 a.m., with every sector within the benchmark index losing ground. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 192 points, or 0.6%, to 34,620 and the Nasdaq fell 0.7%.

Technology companies were the biggest drag on the market, along with communications and health care stocks. Nvidia fell 1.3% and Twitter fell 1.1%.

Banks held on to some gains as bond yields climbed. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.34% from 1.30% late Wednesday.

A mix of retailers gained ground following the retail sales report, which showed a surprise jump in August. Gap rose 2.7% and Bath & Body Works rose 1.3%.

Investors were given another mixed bag of economic data to review as they try to gauge the economic recovery's path ahead amid the virus pandemic, inflation and other factors.

The Commerce Department reported that retail sales rose 0.7% in August. Economists had expected a 0.85% contraction over concerns that people would have pulled back on spending as the highly contagious delta variant of COVID-19 prompts consumers to pull back on shopping.

Consumers simply shifted spending to more online purchases and away from businesses that are still struggling to recover from the pandemic, including restaurants and other business that rely on in-person spending.

Wall Street is also reviewing a disappointing report showing that weekly unemployment claims rose more than expected.