US STOCKS-S&P 500, Dow end lower with energy,…

By Caroline Valetkevitch

NEW YORK, Aug 9 (Reuters) – The S&P 500 and Dow ended down slightly on Thursday as gains in Apple and Amazon were offset by losses in energy and financial shares.

Tesla Inc’s shares also fell to a two-day low and wiped out all of the gains fueled by Chief Executive Elon Musk’s recent tweet announcing a plan to take the company private. The stock ended down 4.8 percent.

The S&P 500 was in slightly positive territory most of the day, putting it once again close to the record high it hit Jan. 26. The Nasdaq also neared its all-time high.

The technology sector has been at the center of a sharp recovery in U.S. stocks since a market rout in February.

Shares of Apple rose 0.8 percent, while those of Amazon were up 0.6 percent.

“It’s hard pressed for this market to really leap ahead. It’s been a slow, steady climb, led by an increasingly smaller number of companies,” said Rick Meckler, partner at Cherry Lane Investments, a family investment office in New Vernon, New Jersey.

“Somehow, technology seems a little more insulated” to concerns facing some companies, including trade war tensions, Meckler added.

Leading sector declines was the S&P energy index, which fell 0.9 percent. Occidental Petroleum fell 4.2 percent after it maintained a tepid production forecast for the year. The S&P financial index was down 0.6 percent.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 74.52 points, or 0.29 percent, to 25,509.23, the S&P 500 lost 4.12 points, or 0.14 percent, to 2,853.58 and the Nasdaq Composite added 3.46 points, or 0.04 percent, to 7,891.78.

The biggest drag on the S&P 500 was Booking

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