Wall Street ends slightly up but slumps for the week
NEW YORK (REUTERS) - United States (US) stocks ended mostly higher on Friday, with the Dow and S&P 500 ending two days of heavy losses, though traders continued to fret over planned changes to the Federal Reserve's easy money policy.
Major indexes posted their biggest weekly declines since April, while the Nasdaq fell for a third straight day on a steep decline in software company Oracle Corp. Markets were volatile, with the Nasdaq at one point dropping more than 1 per cent.
Shares have slumped since Wednesday when Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke laid out the Fed's plans to scale back on its US$85 billion (S$108 billion) in monthly asset purchases. The S&P broke under its 50-day moving average, contributing to 4.6 per cent pullback from its all-time closing high reached on May 21. This retreat represents the largest since an 8.9 per cent decline between September and November.
"A lot of investors thought the sell-off was overdone after we broke through those technical levels, but all the existential things that drove us down are still in place," said Mr Nicholas Colas, chief market strategist at the ConvergEx Group in New York. "People aren't sure what's going to happen with Fed policy or rates or anything else. It is too soon to say we hit a bottom."