Oil majors drag down S&P, Dow; tech stocks boost Nasdaq

WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - The S&P 500 and the Dow were lower on Friday following weak economic data and poor earnings from oil majors Exxon and Chevron.

However, a surge in Alphabet and Amazon.com's shares kept the Nasdaq in positive territory. Investor sentiment was dented by a slower-than-expected growth in US gross domestic product.

Exxon shares fell 4 per cent after the oil producer reported a lower-than-expected quarterly profit. Fellow Dow component Chevron shed 2 per cent after posting its biggest loss since 2001.

The two stocks were the biggest drags on the S&P and the Dow. "There is nothing in the markets to be excited about and we are at all-time highs, which is not justified," said Phil Davis, chief executive officer of PSW Investments. "Its going to be a very low volume day today because there are simply no buyers in the market.

The S&P 500 is currently trading at about 17.4 times expected earnings, above the 10-year median of 14.7 times, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine.

At 9:34 a.m. ET (9.34 p.m Singapore time), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 31.81 points, or 0.17 per cent, at 18,424.54.

The S&P 500 was down 0.43 points, or 0.02 per cent, at 2,169.63.

The Nasdaq Composite was up 8.52 points, or 0.17 per cent, at 5,163.50.

Five of the 10 major S&P 500 indexes were lower, with the energy sector dropping the most by 1.13 per cent.

Google's parent Alphabet surged 3.5 per cent to US$794.94 after the company's second-quarter earnings handily beat analysts'estimates. The stock was the top percentage gainer on all three indexes.

Amazon.com touched a record high of US$766 after the online retailer posted strong results and gave an upbeat forecast for the current quarter.