Stocks on Thursday gave back some gains from a solid rally a day earlier. The Dow fell 101 points to 24,474, the S&P 500 fell 23 points to 2,948, and the Nasdaq fell 90 points to 9,284. All the losses were under 1%. They came during a choppy trading session as investors weighed more bad news—including jobless claims—about the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, per the AP. Meanwhile, investors also had an eye on the latest flareup in tensions between Washington and Beijing. The White House issued a report attacking China's economic and military policies, and its human rights violations. The report expands on President Trump’s get-tough rhetoric that he hopes will resonate with voters angry about China’s handling of the disease outbreak.
Technology and health care stocks took some of the heaviest losses. Only industrial sector stocks and household goods makers held onto gains. Homebuilders were broadly higher. “It really looks like a little bit of weakness ahead of the long holiday weekend,” said Ryan Detrick, senior market strategist for LPL Financial. US markets will be closed Monday for Memorial Day. Generally, investors are betting that the economy and corporate profits will begin to recover from the pandemic as the US and countries around the world slowly open up again. However, concerns remain that the relaxing of stay-at-home mandates and the reopening of businesses could lead to another surge in infections, potentially ushering in another wave of shutdowns.
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