Markets

Close Update: Wall Street Surrenders Early Gains as Geopolitical Risks Resurface

Selling erupted across Wall Street Monday as worries about rekindled tensions in the Mideast erased early gains and permeated nearly every sector of the S&P 500. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech accusing Iran of violating its nuclear arms deal with the US and partners overshadowed positive price action tied to M&A activity and strong quarterly results from blue chip stock McDonald's ( MCD ), sending Wall Street's major market averages into negative territory.

But despite the negative price action on the last day of the month, the three benchmark indices all ended April in the plus column after two consecutive months in the red. The Dow was up 0.2%, the S&P 500 was up 0.3% and the Nasdaq Composite gained less than 0.01%.

Stocks were gaining altitude on Monday with a barrage of mergers and upbeat earnings fueling Monday's positive price action. Led by gains in component stocks McDonald's and Apple ( AAPL ), the blue chip index was trading with a triple-digit gain before geopolitical risks resurfaced mid-morning ahead of Netanyahu's speech.

Monday's economic data was mostly bullish with the exception of a below-consensus gain in the pending home sales index, another contributing factor to the soft price action mid-morning. The index increased by 0.4% in March, well below estimates for a 1.0% increase, and followed a downwardly revised 2.8% gain in February.

Conversely, personal income and consumption spending in March were both modestly higher and in-line with expectations. The Chicago PMI increased to 57.6 from 57.4 in March, but was slightly below expectations.

For Tuesday, the heavy slate of economic data continues with the final manufacturing PMI for April and the corresponding index from the Institute for Supply Management, followed by March construction spending.

Also on Tuesday, the Federal Open Market Committee begins its two-day policy meeting, expected to end Wednesday with no change to US interest rates.

Here's where the markets stood at the close:

US MARKETS

Dow Jones Industrial Index was down 148.04 points (-0.61%)

S&P 500 was down 21.86 points (-0.82%)

Nasdaq Composite Index was down 53.53 points (-0.75%)

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

FTSE 100 was up 0.09%

Nikkei 225 was closed

Hang Seng Index was up 1.74%

Shanghai China Composite Index was closed

UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) STDY (+77.36%) Acquired by United Therapeutics ( UTHR ) for $216 million

(-) ANDV (+13.03%) To be acquired by Marathon Petroleum Co ( MRO )

(+) NSPR (+12.96%) CGuard Embolic Prevention system and MGuard Prime approved for sale in Vietnam

(+) PSTI (+6.45%) Acute radiation syndrome treatment IND approved by FDA

DOWNSIDE MOVERS

(-) S (-13.69%) Agreed to all-stock merger with T-Mobile ( TMUS )

(-) CTB Q1 (-8.94%) profit and sales declined from year ago, missing Wall Street's estimates

(-) W (-6.47%) Downgraded at Wedbush to neutral from outperform

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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