A mostly listless day on Wall Street ended Tuesday with stocks closing slightly lower as losses in industrial, technology and financial stocks outweighed gains elsewhere in the market.
Stocks wavered between small gains and losses through much of the day, with communications companies and retailers bucking the overall market decline. Mixed data on new U.S. home sales pulled homebuilders lower.
The stagnant trading came as investors looked ahead to a busy stretch of economic data releases later this week and the Federal Reserve’s next interest rate policy meeting in two weeks. Meanwhile, traders continued to wait for new details on the trade talks between the U.S. and China.
Stock prices already reflect the recent investor optimism the world’s biggest economies are close to reaching a deal, noted Bill Northey, senior investment director at U.S. Bank Wealth Management.
“We’ll know those details when they’re announced,” he said. “That’s part of what the market is digesting.”
The S&P 500 index dropped 3.16 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,789.65. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 13.02 points, or 0.1 percent, to 25,806.63. The Nasdaq composite slipped 1.21 points, or 0.02 percent, to 7,576.36. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 7.15 points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,568.28.