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Wall Street ends down with fall in tech shares


Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., March 27, 2023. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

U.S. stocks ended lower on Tuesday as investors weighed comments from a top U.S. regulator on struggling banks and sold shares of technology-related names after their recent strong run.

Michael Barr, the Federal Reserve’s top banking regulator, told a Senate panel that Silicon Valley Bank did a “terrible” job of managing risk before its collapse.

Shares of Apple (AAPL.O) and Microsoft (MSFT.O) along with other technology-related shares were among the biggest drags on the S&P 500.

“It’s a little bit of a follow-through from yesterday’s pullback in tech stocks. You’re seeing a little bit of profit-taking,” said Michael James, managing director of equity trading at Wedbush Securities in Los Angeles. “Some of the enthusiasm is waning a little bit.”

The S&P 500 technology index (.SPLRCT) extended recent declines Tuesday, but remains up sharply for the quarter.

The KBW regional banking index (.KRX) was down on the day, while shares of First Citizens BancShares Inc (FCNCA.O) were up slightly, a day after the stock rose more than 50% after it said it would acquire the deposits and loans of Silicon Valley Bank.

According to preliminary data, the S&P 500 (.SPX) lost 6.17 points, or 0.16%, to end at 3,971.36 points, while the Nasdaq Composite (.IXIC) lost 52.27 points, or 0.44%, to 11,716.56. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI) fell 38.05 points, or 0.12%, to 32,394.03.

Higher Treasury yields also weighed on tech shares. Yields have climbed from six-months lows hit Friday.

Early in the day, a survey showed U.S. consumer confidence unexpectedly increased in March, but also that Americans are becoming a bit anxious about the labor market.

With the first quarter’s end approaching, investors are thinking about upcoming quarterly results. Strategists said that as lenders report quarterly results from next month, the market will learn more details about the health of banks following the collapse of some big regional lenders that fanned fears of a sector-wide contagion.

Alibaba Group Holding jumped after the company said it plans to split its business into six main units covering e-commerce, media and the cloud.

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