Nasdaq leads Wall Street lower after hawkish Fed comments

Market


Wall Street’s main indexes slipped on Monday, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq down about 1%, as hawkish comments from a U.S. Federal Reserve official tempered hopes of the central bank toning down its aggressive monetary policy approach.

Federal Reserve Governor Christopher Waller, a voting member of the rate-setting committee this year, said on Sunday that markets should now pay attention to the “endpoint” of rate increases, not the pace of each move, and that the endpoint was likely “a ways off”.

The comments follow a softer-than-expected inflation report last week, which had buoyed hopes that the Fed could scale back its hefty interest rate hikes and helped drive a euphoric market rally.

The S&P 500 in the previous session logged its biggest weekly percentage gain in about five months, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq notched its best week since March.

In the week ahead, focus will be on a slew of economic data including retail sales numbers on Wednesday as well as speeches by several Fed officials for further clues on the outlook for interest rates.

“The market is expecting the Fed to continue its hawkish rhetoric on rates. That could all change once we get more confirmation on inflation in December,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities.

Traders now expect the Fed to hike interest rates in December by a half point, and expect terminal rate in the range of 4.75%-5.0% next year.

At 9:42 a.m. ET, the S&P 500 was down 17.25 points, or 0.43%, at 3,975.68, and the Nasdaq Composite was down 115.13 points, or 1.02%, at 11,208.20. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 7.84 points, or 0.02%, at 33,740.02. Gains in drugmakers including Johnson & Johnson and Amgen limited declines on the blue-chip index.

As U.S. Treasury yields edged up, technology and growth names such as Microsoft Corp, Apple Inc and Amazon.com Inc slipped between 1% and 3%.

The S&P 500 information technology sector was down 1.2% and among the leading sectoral decliners on the benchmark index.

Tesla Inc fell 3.4% as Chief Executive Elon Musk said “I have too much work on my plate” when asked about his recent acquisition of Twitter and his leadership of the electric-vehicle maker.

Chinese leader Xi Jinping and U.S. President Joe Biden met on Monday for long-awaited talks that come as relations between their countries are at their lowest in decades, marred by disagreements over a host of issues from Taiwan to trade.

Among other stocks, Biogen Inc and Eli Lilly gained 3.4% and 1.4%, respectively, after the failure of Swiss rival Roche’s Alzheimer’s disease drug candidate.

Theater operator AMC Entertainment jumped 6.5% as Marvel’s latest film “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” grossed $330 million globally in its opening weekend, while Hasbro Inc fell 7.4% after BofA Global Research downgraded the toymaker’s stock.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers for a 2.08-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 1.65-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded four new 52-week highs and no new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 23 new highs and 21 new lows.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text.

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