Wall Street's major market averages idled within narrow ranges on Friday as investors kept a cautious eye on US/China trade negotiations and the persistently high yield on the 10-year Treasury note. The Dow held on to a slim gain largely attributed to gains in component stocks Boeing ( BA ) and Caterpillar ( CAT ), while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq both ended the day lower on steep losses in the energy and financial sectors. Small caps continued to outperform, driving the Russell 2000 to another record high.
All three ended the week lower with the blue chip index down 0.4%, the S&P 500 0.5% lower and the Nasdaq losing 0.6% from last Friday's close.
Stocks struggled for direction Friday and were initially gaining ground before the opening bell until the Dow ran up against resistance at its 100-day moving average and brent crude oil futures retreated from the $80 per barrel level.
The Dow managed to stay above water on strength in industrials, but a steeper yield curve weighed on banking stocks and pushed the S&P 500 into the red for the day. The Nasdaq was plagued throughout the day by losses in FAANG stocks as well as semiconductors after Applied Materials' ( AMAT ) sales guidance missed Wall Street estimates. Shares of Micron Technologies ( MU ) and KLA-Tencor ( KLAC ) fell in sympathy.
As earnings season winds down, investors shifted their focus back to trade negotiations between the world's two largest economies. Reports that the Chinese were willing to cut $200 billion from their trade surplus with the US sent equities higher overseas before retreating when Chinese government officials issued a denial in the midst of what has been mostly underwhelming progress towards a mutually agreeable trade deal.
Here's where the markets stood at the close:
Dow Jones Industrial Index was up 1.11 points (+0.0045%)
S&P 500 was down 7.16 points (-0.26%)
Nasdaq Composite Index was down 28.13 points (-0.38%)
FTSE 100 was down 0.12%
Nikkei 225 was up 0.40%
Hang Seng Index was up 0.34%
Shanghai China Composite Index was up 1.23%
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