The Dow was down 92 points to 12878, the NASDAQ was lower by 10 points to 2909 and the S&P 500 Index posted a loss of 10 points to 1365.
Stocks gave up ground after global central banks failed to meet lofty expectations for monetary policy action. The ECB made no decisive action to help stabilize the region’s surging borrowing costs and the Bank of England followed by failing to expand its government bond buying program.
A slowdown in factory orders added to the negative tone as orders dropped 0.5%, marking the third decline in four months.
Meanwhile, a better-than-expected weekly jobless claims number was overlooked as investor focus now turns to tomorrow’s all-important jobs report. Nonfarm payrolls are expected to increase by 100,000 in July with the unemployment rate holding steady at 8.2%.
With the risk trade off, almost all sectors declined led by losses in the cyclically sensitive energy and materials sectors. As a result, Chevron fell $1.25 to $109.25 and Alcoa gave up 25 cents to $8.18. In addition, second-quarter earnings season continues after the closing bell tonight with notable profit tallies due out from Kraft Foods and AIG.
Overall, NYSE Composite volume totaled over 4.1 billion shares. The NYSE was 5-3 negative on issues and 7-2 negative on volume. On the NASDAQ, decliners beat advancers by 4-3 on issues and by 2-1 on volume.
In fixed-income, Treasuries were higher with the 10-year note up 11/32 to yield 1.48% and the 30-year bond gained 27/32 to yield 2.56%.