Technology Companies Help Pull Stocks Lower

(AP) —
Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Friday. (Reuters/Brendan McDermid)

U.S. stocks veered broadly lower in morning trading Friday, extending the market’s modest losses from a day earlier. Technology stocks accounted for a big slice of the slide. Health-care stocks and consumer-goods companies also declined. Energy companies fell along with the price of crude oil.

KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 index fell 21 points, or 0.8 percent, to 2,671 as of 11:18 a.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 216 points, or 0.9 percent, to 24,448. The Nasdaq composite lost 76 points, or 1.1 percent, to 7,161. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gave up 6 points, or 0.4 percent, to 1,567.

TECH TUMBLE: Several technology companies were trading lower, extending the sector’s losses this week. Apple led the slide, losing 3.6 percent to $166.60.

NOT PLAYING: Mattel slid 5.6 percent to $12.70 after the struggling toy maker said that CEO Margo Georgiadis is stepping down and is being succeeded by a company director and former studio executive.

MISSTEP: Shares in Skechers USA plunged 29 percent to $29.80 after the footwear company issued a second-quarter forecast that was far weaker than analysts had expected.

DRILLED: Stanley Black & Decker dropped 5.6 percent to $145.85 after the tool company said that commodities costs rose in the first quarter and sales of outdoor products got off to a slow start.

SURPRISING RESULTS: General Electric climbed 4 percent to $14.55 after the conglomerate reported quarterly results that beat Wall Street’s expectations.

BUYING & SELLING: Kroger gained 1.9 percent after the supermarket operator sold its convenience-store business and agreed to buy back $1.2 billion in stock from Goldman Sachs.

ENERGY: Crude-oil prices fell as representatives from OPEC nations and allied oil ministers met in Saudi Arabia to discuss their agreement to maintain cuts to production in a bid to keep prices up. Benchmark U.S. crude dropped 29 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $68 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, slid 40 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $73.38 per barrel in London.

The decline in oil prices pulled energy-sector stocks lower. Range Resources lost 4.4 percent to $13.62.

BOND YIELDS: Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 2.93 percent from 2.91 percent late Thursday.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 107.64 yen from 107.41 yen on Thursday. The euro fell to $1.2276 from $1.2337. The pound weakened to $1.4023 from $1.4078 after the Bank of England’s governor cast some doubts about the possibility of a rate increase next month.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: In Europe, Germany’s DAX slipped 0.3 percent, while France’s CAC 40 gained 0.2 percent. Britain’s FTSE 100 rose 0.4 percent. Asian stock indexes finished lower. Japan’s Nikkei 225 slipped 0.1 percent. South Korea’s Kospi lost 0.4 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index fell 0.9 percent.

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