U.S. stocks are mostly lower Tuesday as travel companies, retailers and banks take losses. Travel booking sites Priceline and TripAdvisor are taking steep losses following their third-quarter reports. Companies that pay big dividends, including utilities, are making gains. Oil prices are down slightly after they jumped to two-year highs a day ago.
KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor’s 500 index was unchanged at 2,591 as of 11:45 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average slipped 13 points, or 0.1 percent, to 23,535. The Nasdaq composite lost 13 points, or 0.2 percent, to 6,773. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks fell 13 points, or 0.9 percent, to 1,484 as investors continued to watch for signs of progress by House Republicans on their proposed tax cuts. Investors feel that smaller and more U.S.-focused companies could benefit the most from a corporate tax cut.
The S&P 500, Dow and Nasdaq have closed at record highs the last two sessions.
TRAVELING MOOD: Travel website TripAdvisor plunged after its third-quarter revenue fell short of analyst estimates. Booking service Priceline Group had a better-than-expected quarter, but its forecasts for the current quarter disappointed Wall Street. Analysts said the company is spending a lot of money on advertising, but that may pay off with increased market share. TripAdvisor sank $7.08, or 17.9 percent, to $32.46; and Priceline lost $226.31, or 11.9 percent, to $1,676.69. Competitor Expedia shed $2.26, or 1.8 percent, to $120.72.
However, Royal Caribbean Cruises jumped $1.85, or 1.5 percent, to $127.19 after it had a strong quarter even though its business was affected by three major hurricanes.
TECH RALLY FADES: Technology companies are slightly lower after an eight-day winning streak. They have been setting all-time highs throughout that time, and the S&P technology index is up 37 percent this year. That’s far better than any other group of stocks. On Tuesday, chipmaker Skyworks Solutions fell $7.57, or 6.5 percent, to $108.76; and Microchip Technology gave up $3.95, or 4.1 percent, to $91.41 after their quarterly reports. Semiconductor makers jumped Monday on deal reports in the industry.
Retailers dipped as well. Department store Kohl’s skidded $1.82, or 4.3 percent, to $40.80; and Target sank $1.25, or 2.1 percent, to $58.04.
LEADERS: Household goods makers, utilities, and other companies that tend to pay big dividends did better than the rest of the market. Drugstore and pharmacy benefits company CVS Health jumped $2.12, or 3.2 percent, to $68.92, and recovered some of its recent losses. Shopping mall operator GGP climbed $1.29, or 6.8 percent, to $20.30.
Real estate companies and household goods makers have lagged far behind the S&P 500 this year. The stocks are generally seen as cautious investments, and they haven’t done as well as the rest of the market this year because investors are betting on improved economic growth rather than looking for safety.
SLIMMED DOWN: Weight loss company Weight Watchers continued to surge after it raised its forecasts for the year. Its stock rose $7.68, or 17.1 percent, to $52.48. It started the year at $11.45.
MALLIN-CRUSHED: Drugmaker Mallinckrodt plunged after it said sales of its costly HP Acthar gel have been hurt because fewer prescriptions are being filled. It said revenue from the drug will decline in the fourth quarter. The company’s third-quarter sales also fell short of analyst projections as revenue from generic drugs weakened. Already trading at all-time lows, the stock dropped $9.99, or 32 percent, to $21.19.
OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude fell 26 cents to $57.09 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, fell 56 cents to $63.71 a barrel in London. Oil prices rose about 3 percent Monday and hit two-year highs after a wave of arrests of princes and other officials in Saudi Arabia. Investors wondered if the upheaval could affect oil supplies and prices. The government said the arrests were part of as a crackdown on corruption, but skeptics say it targets potential rivals and critics of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who heads the anti-corruption committee that was formed shortly before the arrests.
BONDS: Bond prices were little changed. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note slipped to 2.31 percent from 2.32 percent. The yield on the 2-year note held steady at 1.62 percent.
CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 114.06 yen from 113.77 yen. The euro fell to $1.1571 from $1.1606.
OVERSEAS: London’s FTSE 100 shed 0.6 percent. The CAC 40 in France lost 0.4 percent while Germany’s DAX fell 0.5 percent. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 jumped 1.7 percent, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng advanced 1.3 percent. In Seoul, the Kospi lost 0.2 percent.