Stocks are edging mostly lower in early trading on Wall Street Tuesday, a day after the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq hit their latest record highs. Technology stocks, which had led the gains a day earlier, were in the losing column. The S&P 500 was off 0.1%. Investors were keeping a close eye on the latest report on inflation, which showed that wholesale prices rose 0.8% in May and by 6.6% over the past 12 months, the biggest such increase on records going back to 2010. European markets were mostly higher and Asian markets closed mixed. Treasury yields edged higher.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP’s earlier story follows below.
BANGKOK (AP) — Shares were mostly higher in Europe and Asia after gains in several big-name tech companies including Apple helped nudge the S&P 500 to another record high.
Investors are watching for the outcome of the Federal Reserve’s policy setting meeting this week. Benchmarks rose in Paris, Frankfurt and Tokyo but fell in Hong Kong and Shanghai, where jitters over tensions between China and the U.S. are weighing on sentiment.
Investors are watching for the outcome of the Federal Reserve’s policy setting meeting this week, where decisionmakers will gauge the strength of the economic recovery and whether emerging signs of inflation will be transitory.
The concern is that the Fed could ease up on bond purchases and other stimulus measures as the economy recovers. The Fed delivers its interest rate policy update Wednesday afternoon and no policy changes are expected immediately, but comments on a shift in policy could jostle already skittish markets.
The Fed's meeting is so “spectator worthy," Mizuho Bank said in a commentary, “because the Fed is confronted with a balancing act of walking a tight-rope between transition and tantrums."
The Fed will be obliged to at least acknowledge the recovery and recent 13-year high inflation readings, it said.
Germany's DAX added 0.6% to 15,766.19 while the CAC 40 in Paris climbed 0.4% to 3,562.50. In London, the FTSE 100 picked up 0.3% to 7,165.82. The futures for the S&P 500 and the Dow industrials rose 0.1%.
In Asian trading, Tokyo's Nikkei 225 rose 1% to 29,441.30 and the Kospi in Seoul gained 0.2% to 3,258.63. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng lost 0.7% to 28,638.53 while the Shanghai Composite index shed 0.9% to 3,556.56. In Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 advanced 0.9% to 7,359.50.
Aside from geopolitical concerns, investors in Hong Kong and Shanghai were keeping an eye on developments following reports of a possible leak at the Taishan Nuclear Power Plant in Guangdong province, near Hong Kong.
Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said data from the Hong Kong Observatory and other departments showed that as of Monday night the radiation levels in the city were normal after the French joint operator of the plant said it was dealing with a “performance issue,” but the plant was operating within safety parameters.
On Monday, the S&P 500 logged its third straight all-time high, gaining 0.2% to 4,255.15. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gave up 0.2%, to 34,393.75. The Nasdaq rose 0.7% to 14,174.14.
Small-company stocks fell. The Russell 2000 index lost 0.4%, to 2,326.15.
A burst of buying in the final 10 minutes of trading sent the benchmark index after another bout of choppy trading.
Uncertainty over inflation has been fueling much of the back-and-forth in the market between stocks that are considered safer value holdings versus those with more potential for sharp growth. A boost in demand for goods has helped fuel a rise in the cost of everything from food to cars and household goods. Shipping costs are also rising and adding to the increase in prices.
The yield on the 10-year Treasury note slipped to 1.48% from 1.50% late Monday.
In other trading, benchmark U.S. crude oil picked up 8 cents to $70.96 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It lost 3 cents to $70.88 per barrel on Monday. Brent crude, the international standard, added 11 cents to $72.97 per barrel.
The U.S. dollar was trading at 110.12 Japanese yen, up from 110.07 late Monday. The euro rose to $1.2131 from $1.2120.