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Overnight Markets: US stocks end mostly lower on tech selloff

by Himanshu Singh on May 09, 2014 at 04:34

Overnight Markets: US stocks end mostly lower on tech selloff

Wall Street mostly declined on Thursday with the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq closing lower, as technology shares erased a rally to sell off for a third straight day.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 32 points or 0.2%, to close at 16,551, the S&P 500 lost three points or 0.14%, to 1,876 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 16 points or 0.4%, to 4,051.

Nasdaq was boosted earlier by a turnaround in beaten-down internet stocks, while a drop in initial jobless claims suggested the labour market was improving and had helped lift the broader market.

US Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, in testimony to a Senate panel, said no decision had yet been made on the central bank's portfolio of assets, which has swollen to $4.5 trillion from about $800 billion in 2007. If the Fed ultimately shrinks it to a pre-crisis size, the process could take the better part of a decade, Yellen said.

However, a late selloff in utilities and energy dragged the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq to session lows. Transocean Ltd. slid 4.3%, its biggest decline since February 2013, while Nabors Industries Ltd. fell 3.1%. Phone companies had the best performance, rallying 1.5%.

Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) jumped 4.2% and Groupon (GRPN.O) gained 6.1% on Thursday. Amazon dropped for a third day, falling 1.5%. E*Trade declined 2.1% for its third decline in the past four sessions.

Priceline Group (PCLN.O) fell 2.1% after the travel website operator reported higher-than-expected quarterly profit but forecast second-quarter profit below estimates.

Tesla Motors (TSLA.O) shares fell 11.3%, a day after the company's outlook also disappointed some investors.

DirecTV dropped 3.6%. AT&T Inc., the second-biggest US mobile-phone carrier, is in talks to buy the satellite-television company, sources said. AT&T climbed 1.8%.

In Asia, most shares gained on Friday in late morning trade as Macau casino operators rebounded in Hong Kong and Canon Inc. said it would buy back shares.

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