Dow industrials dragged lower by Walgreens as S&P, Nasdaq eke out modest gains

U.S. stocks closed on a mixed note Tuesday, as investors stayed on the sidelines a day after a rally inspired by upbeat manufacturing data out of China and the U.S.

What are major indexes doing?

The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.30% fell 79.29 points, or 0.3%, to 26,179.13, weighed down in large part by a weak earnings report from Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. WBA, -12.81% The S&P 500 index SPX, +0.00% rose 0.05 point to 2,867.24, while the Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, +0.25% rose 19.78 points, roughly 0.3%, to 7,832.

What’s drove the market?

Investors took a bit of a breather Tuesday, after a Monday rally that saw the Dow rally 301 points, or 1.2%, while the S&P 500 rose 1.1% and the Nasdaq COMP, +0.25% gained 1.2%. Stocks got off to a strong start after a purchasing index reading for China pointed to the first expansion in activity in the country’s manufacturing sector in four months, which was followed by a stronger-than-expected reading for the Institute for Supply Management’s U.S. manufacturing index.

Data out Tuesday on durable-goods orders, however, helped temper optimism, after the Commerce Department said they fell 1.6% in the month of February, while a key gauge of business investment also fell by 0.1%, the third decline in four months.

Investors also kept an eye on the Treasury market. A closely watched measure of the yield curve — the spread between the yield on the 10-year Treasury note TMUBMUSD10Y, -1.18% and the 3-month Treasury bill TMUBMUSD03M, +0.53% — turned negative, or inverted, on March 22. Such an inversion is viewed as a reliable warning of a potential recession a year or more in the future.

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