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Tech gains but industrials slide, leaving indexes mixed

Tech gains but industrials slide, leaving indexes mixed

March 13th, 2018 by Associated Press in Business

FILE - This Oct. 25, 2016, file photo shows the New York Stock Exchange in Lower Manhattan. The U.S. stock market opens at 9:30 a.m. EST on Monday, March 12, 2018. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks were split Monday as technology companies continued to climb, but Boeing and other industrial companies gave back some of the ground they won on Friday.

Companies like Apple and Alphabet, Google's parent company, and chipmakers including Micron Technology have led the market's recovery in recent weeks. Retailers including Amazon and Starbucks also made headway. The market was coming off its biggest gain in a month following the February jobs report, which showed strong hiring and moderate growth in wages.

Inflation has been the market's dominant concern over the last six weeks, and two more measuring sticks of inflation will be reported this week as the Labor Department discloses data on consumer prices Tuesday morning and producer prices on Wednesday. Prices paid by consumers jumped in January and so did producer prices, which measure the cost of goods before they reach the consumer.

The Federal Reserve is gradually raising interest rates to keep inflation in check, and it expects to boost rates at least three times this year. JJ Kinahan, chief market strategist for TD Ameritrade, said investors are looking at a lot of data but are really asking one question.

"If you think about the selloffs that we've had, they've all been about 'are we going to get a fourth rate hike or aren't we?'" he said.

The S&P 500 index fell 3.55 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,783.02. The Dow Jones industrial average declined 157.13 points, or 0.6 percent, to 25,178.61. Almost all of that loss came from three industrial stocks: Boeing, Caterpillar and United Technologies.

The Nasdaq composite finished at another record high after it added 27.51 points, or 0.4 percent, to 7,588.32. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks rose 3.91 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,601.06.