U.S. stocks edged down Monday and oil prices fell after data showed a slowdown in China’s economy.
The S&P 500 ticked down 0.6%, led by declines in the energy and tech sector, after the broad gauge of stocks hit its 48th all-time closing high of 2021 on Friday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 0.4%. The blue-chip index also finished last week at a record high.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 1.2%.
Stocks have ground higher in thin summer trading, buoyed by a bumper set of quarterly earnings reports from American companies. However, investors remain wary of the damping effect of the Delta variant of Covid-19 on business activity, and potential pitfalls including geopolitical uncertainty and a possible end to the Federal Reserve’s asset-purchase program by mid-2022.
“Although we had a generally great earnings season this past quarter, we may be past the peak of recovery,” said Sean Sun, portfolio manager at Thornburg Investment Management, who is buying stocks tied to digital transformation themes. “The market kind of sees the storm on the horizon — delta flare ups everywhere and weak consumer confidence.”