S&P 500 logs 5-day losing streak on economic concerns-Xinhua

S&P 500 logs 5-day losing streak on economic concerns

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2022-12-08 07:51:15

NEW YORK, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- U.S. equities continued to struggle on Wednesday with the S&P 500 notching a fifth day of losses, as investors grew concerned over economic uncertainty.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.58 points, or 0.005 percent, to 33,597.92. The S&P 500 fell 7.34 points, or 0.19 percent, to 3,933.92. The Nasdaq Composite Index fell 56.34 points, or 0.51 percent, to 10,958.55.

Eight of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors ended in red, with communication services and technology down 0.93 percent and 0.51 percent, respectively, leading the laggards. Health care rose 0.85 percent, the best-performing group.

Investors were cautiously awaiting next week's Federal Open Market Committee meeting, hoping to get a clearer view of the central bank's next move.

"Hopes the Federal Reserve (Fed) will moderate its rate hiking cycle has faltered in December," and "investor focus shifted to the prospect that the Fed will continue tightening even as the economy weakens," UBS analysts said Wednesday in a note.

Adding to worries were recession warnings by chief executives from several bank giants.

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon on Tuesday warned that stubbornly high inflation could drag the U.S. economy into a recession next year as steep prices cause consumer spending to dry up.

Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon said there is "very reasonable possibility" that the economy enters recession next year, warning of "bumpy times" ahead.

The S&P 500 rallied 13.8 percent in October and November on hopes of smaller rate hikes and an economic soft landing, but recent data has highlighted uncertainty over the outlook, calling the sustainability of the rally into question.

While there were signs of moderation in U.S. inflation, last Friday's employment report showed not only a stronger than expected labor market, but also higher than expected wage growth. Some fear the latter type of inflation is even harder to tamp down.

Elsewhere, latest data by the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) showed that the U.S. manufacturing sector dropped into contraction territory, while the service sector unexpectedly expanded at a faster pace. The prices paid component of the ISM non-manufacturing index declined, but only modestly.

"This increases uncertainty about the timing of the 2023 inflection points for growth and inflation, and that is likely to prolong market swings until those points are reached," said Mark Haefele, chief investment officer at UBS Global Wealth Management, adding the economic conditions for a sustained upturn are not yet in place.

"We think the fundamental challenges of higher rates and slowing growth will linger when we enter 2023, and we do not think the economic conditions for a sustained upturn are yet in place," he said.