US stocks retreat, oil shares hit

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on June 10, 2019.
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on June 10, 2019.PHOTO: AFP

NEW YORK (AFP) - Wall Street stocks sagged for a second straight session on Wednesday (June 12), with petroleum-linked shares sinking with oil prices and banks falling on worries over economic growth.

Analysts said ongoing trade tensions between the US and China continued to weigh on sentiment, as did another decline in the yield in the 10-year US Treasury note, seen as an indicator of future economic strength.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 0.2 per cent to finish the session at 26,006.83.

The broad-based S&P 500 also lost 0.2 per cent to close at 2,879.84, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 0.4 per cent to 7,792.72.

"The market is concerned about the US economic growth, global growth, and the tariffs issue," said Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist of Prudential Financial.

He said investors are also somewhat less hopeful that the Federal Reserve will cut interest rates soon, after the US withdrew a plan to impose tariffs on Mexico.

Fresh economic data continued to show anemic pricing pressures. The Consumer Price Index - which tracks costs for household goods and services - rose a token 0.1 per cent last month compared to April, while the annual rate remains below the Fed's 2 per cent target, the Labour Department reported.

Among individual companies, Facebook dropped 1.7 per cent after the Wall Street Journal reported that chief executive Mark Zuckerberg was linked in emails to potentially problematic privacy practices.

Petroleum producers Marathon Oil and Apache each lost around 3 per cent following a bearish US oil inventory report. Oil services companies also were weak, with Halliburton shedding 4.5 per cent and Transocean 6.9 per cent.

Large banks underperformed as well, with Goldman Sachs losing 2.3 per cent and Citigroup 1.6 per cent as Treasury yields declined.