US stocks decline on falling oil prices

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New York, July 26 (IANS) US stocks ended lower after wavering in a tight range, as a decline in oil prices weighed on Wall Street ahead of the Federal Reserve’s policy meeting, a media report said.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Monday fell 77.79 points, or 0.42 per cent, to 18,493.06, Xinhua news agency reported.

The S&P 500 lost 6.55 points, or 0.30 per cent, to 2,168.48. The Nasdaq Composite Index was down 2.53 points, or 0.05 per cent, to 5,097.63.

Oil prices kept falling on Monday, with both US oil and Brent crude dropping about two per cent, as worries about a global supply glut continued to weigh on the market.

Dragged by the falling oil, energy sector, the biggest laggard of the S&P 500’s ten sectors, tumbled 1.99 percent on Monday.

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With no major economic data due on Monday, earnings season was also in focus. The coming week is the busiest of the second-quarter earnings season, with key names, including Apple, Facebook and Exxon Mobil, slating for release.

US telecom carrier Verizon Communications announced on Monday that it will acquire US technology company Yahoo’s operating business for approximately $4.83 billion in cash.

Following the news, shares of the former fell 0.41 per cent to 55.87 dollars apiece on Monday, while shares of the latter slipped 2.69 per cent to $38.32 per share.

Meanwhile, investors kept a close eye on the Fed’s two-day policy meeting scheduled to begin on Tuesday, for more clues on the timing of a next rate hike.

US stocks ran into a record setting stage in the past two weeks, with both the Dow and the S&P 500 refreshing their closing records seven times for 2016, boosted by upbeat economic data and better-than-expected quarterly results from big companies.

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