Stocks close lower after Dow touches 29,000 for first time

Image Shutterstock

Image Shutterstock

Stocks also got a boost Thursday as investors were optimistic about next week's signing of a phase-one trade deal between the US and China. -China trade deal firmed and several brokerages boosted price targets on high-profile companies.

Asian shares rose Friday as worries receded the United States and Iran might be stepping closer to the edge of war, and US indexes hit records. The United States and China also moved toward an interim deal in their trade war.

"Trump is focused on the (2020 US presidential) election and he wants to avoid an escalation (with Iran) that would push oil price higher and hurt the voters". Chip maker Advanced Micro Devices rose 2.8% for one of the largest gains in the S&P 500.

All the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors rose at market closing, with technology up 1.13 per cent, outperforming the rest.

Trump said his administration will start negotiating the Phase 2 trade agreement soon but that he might wait to complete any agreement until after November's presidential election.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 88.25 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 28,868.65, the S&P 500 lost 3.55 points, or 0.11 per cent, to 3,271.15 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 7.90 points, or 0.09 per cent, to 9,195.53.

Iranian forces fired missiles overnight at military bases housing USA troops in Iraq, in response to the US killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, a move that initially sent shivers across global markets and drove USA stock futures down over 1%.

But also, he said, "in the first part of the year, there's always a lot of money that finds its way into the market".

Among the weak spots was the department store operator Kohl's Corp, which slid 9.2% after reporting lower holiday season sales and warned of full-year earnings coming in at the bottom end of an already lowered forecast.

Smaller rival J.C. Penney Co Inc dropped 10.8 per cent after disappointing same-store sales numbers. Energy declined about 0.3 percent, becoming the worst-performing group. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq each shed almost 0.3%.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners for a 1.81-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 1.64-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

Volume on US exchanges was 7.30 billion shares, compared with the 7.06 billion-share average for the full session over the last 20 trading days.

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