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Dow, SP 500 dip, end 5-day streak of closing highs

Dow, S&P 500 dip, end 5-day streak of closing highs

The Dow and S&P 500 ended slightly lower on Wednesday, breaking their five-day streak of record closing highs as energy and utility shares lost ground, while the Nasdaq climbed.

Energy shares fell along with oil prices, with Brent crude oil breaking below USD 80 a barrel for the first time since September 2010. Shares of Exxon Mobil were down 1.1 percent at USD 95.38, while the S&P energy index dropped 0.9 percent.

S&P utilities slid 2 percent and were the biggest drag on the benchmark index, reversing recent gains. The index is still up 7.6 percent for the month so far.
 
The S&P 500 has rallied more than 9 percent from a six-month low in October, buoyed by supportive economic data and corporate earnings. For the year so far, it is up 10.3 percent.

“The overall environment has really shifted from negative to positive. We had our bounce back … so the markets are fairly quiet, and I think investors are actually fairly comfortable right now,” said Bryant Evans, portfolio manager at Cozad Asset Management, in Champaign, Illinois.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 2.7 points, or 0.02 percent, to 17,612.2, the S&P 500 lost 1.43 points, or 0.07 percent, to 2,038.25 and the Nasdaq Composite added 14.58 points, or 0.31 percent, to 4,675.14.

Lifting the Nasdaq, Apple shares gained 1.4 percent to USD 111.25, a record high. Shares of Twitter jumped 7.5 percent to USD 42.54. It said during its first financial analyst day it is considering creating additional mobile applications.

Financial shares slipped after global regulators fined five major banks for failing to stop their traders from trying to manipulate the foreign exchange market. The banks included Citigroup Inc, whose shares dipped 0.7 percent.

The day’s gainers included retailers, with the S&P retail index climbing 0.6 percent. Macy’s Inc rose 5.1 percent to USD 61.57 after upbeat earnings. Shares of Fossil jumped 8.4 percent to USD 112.48, a day after its results.

Shares of J.C. Penney fell 1.3 percent in after-hours trading, while shares of Cisco Systems dipped 0.2 percent, both after reporting results.

Among the day’s biggest NYSE decliners, SeaWorld Entertainment slumped 9.4 percent to USD 16.85 after earnings fell short of expectations.

NYSE advancers outnumbered decliners 1,669 to 1,410, a 1.18-to-1 ratio on the upside; on the Nasdaq, 1,645 issues rose and 1,029 fell for a 1.60-to-1 ratio.

About 5.9 billion shares traded on US exchanges, below the 6.6 billion average this month, according to BATS Global Markets.

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