US STOCKS-Wall St dragged lower by tech stocks; Yellen in focus

* Alphabet falls after record EU antitrust fine

* Investors focus on Yellen’s talk in London

* Consumer confidence rises more-than-expected in June

* Indexes down: Dow 0.10 pct, S&P 0.27 pct, Nasdaq 0.82 pct
(Updates to early afternoon)

By Tanya Agrawal

June 27 (Reuters) – Wall Street was lower in early afternoon
trading on Tuesday as technology stocks continued to slide while
investors focused on Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s talk
in London.

The technology index fell 1 percent due to a drop
in the shares of Microsoft, Facebook and
Alphabet.

Alphabet fell 1.6 percent to $956.68 after EU antitrust
regulators hit the tech giant with a record $2.7 billion fine.

Since the beginning of the year, the tech index has jumped
about 18 percent, making it the biggest force behind the S&P’s
record-setting rally.

However, the sector has come under pressure in the past few
days over concerns about lofty valuations.

“Tech has gotten a bit ahead of itself. We’ve seen the
sector bounce back but I don’t think you see the confidence that
was there in tech prior to a couple of weeks ago,” said Brad
McMillan, chief investment officer for Commonwealth Financial.

At 13:11 p.m. ET (1711 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial
Average was down 21.24 points, or 0.1 percent, at
21,388.31, the S&P 500 was down 6.8 points, or 0.27
percent, at 2,432.27.

The Nasdaq Composite was down 51.48 points, or 0.82
percent, at 6,195.67.

At a discussion in London, Yellen said it would be going too
far to say there won’t be another financial crisis but the
economy was much safer now.

Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker said on Tuesday
the Fed rightly plans to raise rates once more this year, given
recent inflation weakness is likely temporary.

“I think at this point the Fed is more or less committed to
raising rates as they’re more worried about being behind the
curve and reloading the gun in case of a recession,” added
McMillan.

Earlier in the day, data showed consumer confidence for June
rose more-than-expected, which could bolster the Fed’s case for
another rate hike this year.

However, a steep fall in oil prices and a flattening yield
curve have added to concerns over inflation, which remains below
the Fed’s 2 percent target.

The financial index was the top gainer with a 1.1
percent gains, with Bank of America up 2.9 percent and
JPMorgan rising 1.6 percent.

Sprint rose 4.9 percent after the fourth-largest U.S.
wireless service provider was said to be in talks with Charter
Communications and Comcast about a wireless
partnership. Comcast and Charter were down about 0.70 percent.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 1,487
to 1,352. On the Nasdaq, 1,523 issues fell and 1,276 advanced.
(Reporting by Tanya Agrawal; Editing by Anil D’Silva and Arun
Koyyur)


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