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US Stocks Extend Losses                07/17 16:00

   U.S. stocks extended their losses into a second day on Wednesday as railroad 
operator CSX had its biggest drop in 11 years, pulling other industrial 
companies down with it.

   NEW YORK (AP) -- U.S. stocks extended their losses into a second day on 
Wednesday as railroad operator CSX had its biggest drop in 11 years, pulling 
other industrial companies down with it.

   Banks also fell as investors worried that lower interest rates will hurt 
their profits going forward. Investors expect the Federal Reserve to cut 
interest rates for the first time in a decade at their next policy meeting in 
two weeks.

   The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.05% from 2.12% late Tuesday as 
investors headed for less risky holdings. Utilities, which are also considered 
a safer bet, made late gains and held up better than any other industry.

   Abbott Laboratories gained 3.1% and pushed health care stocks higher after 
the maker of infant formula and drugs raised its forecast for the year. 
UnitedHealth Group also rose.

   Health care was the only sector other than utilities to finish with modest 
gains. Technology stocks gave up early gains and finished lower along with the 
rest of the market.

   The S&P 500 fell 19.62 points, or 0.7%, to 2,984.42. The Dow Jones 
Industrial Average fell 115.78 points, or 0.4%, to 27,219.85. The Nasdaq 
composite fell 37.59 points, or 0.5%, to 8,185.21. Small-company stocks also 
fell. The Russell 2000 index lost 11.22 points, or 0.7%, to 1,550.78.

   Corporate earnings reports are getting into full swing this week, and 
investors have been mostly cautious in their assessments of them. Earnings are 
still expected to decline for S&P 500 companies in the second quarter.

   CSX plunged 10.3% after saying it now expects its revenue to decline as much 
as 2% this year, after previously saying it expected growth. Investors read 
that as trouble for the entire industry and sent the stocks of other railroad 
operators lower. Union Pacific sank 6.1% and Norfolk Southern dropped 7.5%.

   Netflix, which reported its results after the close of regular trading 
Wednesday, plunged 10% in after-hours trading after reporting a dramatic 
slowdown in growth during its traditionally sluggish spring season.

   UnitedHealth Group, Phillip Morris and Morgan Stanley are scheduled to 
release their results Thursday.

   Corporate profits have so far been beating Wall Street forecasts. But 
investors are keeping a close watch on the picture that companies paint for the 
second half of the year.

   "You're getting tempered guidance for the most part," said Lindsey Bell, 
investment strategist with CFRA Research. "It's more of a reality check. 
Second-half growth is not guaranteed at this point."

   Investors are likely going to pause and take a more cautious approach going 
forward, she said, as stock indexes reach record highs. The technology-heavy 
Nasdaq is up more than 23% for the year and the broad S&P 500 is up more than 
19%.

   A weak home construction report loomed over companies that build homes. 
Hovnanian fell 3.1%, Lennar shed 2% and Toll Brothers fell 1.9%.

   U.S. home construction slipped last month as an uptick in the building of 
single-family homes was offset by a big drop in apartment construction. The 
figure fell short of economists' forecasts.

   Nu Skin Enterprises fell 14.6% after the seller of skin care and nutritional 
products slashed its profit and revenue forecast for the year. The company and 
other direct sellers of wellness products are facing increased scrutiny from 
the Chinese government. Nu Skin gets 33% of its revenue from China, according 
to FactSet.

   Cintas rose 8.7% after the uniform rental company beat analysts' profit and 
revenue forecasts for its fiscal fourth quarter. The company also gave 
investors a solid profit forecast for its current fiscal year.

   Benchmark crude oil fell 84 cents to settle at $56.78 a barrel. Brent crude 
oil, the international standard, fell 69 cents to close at $63.66 a barrel. 
Wholesale gasoline fell 1 cent to $1.88 per gallon. Heating oil declined 1 cent 
to $1.89 per gallon. Natural gas fell 1 cent to $2.30 per 1,000 cubic feet.

   Gold rose $12.10 to $1,421.30 per ounce, silver rose 29 cents to $15.89 per 
ounce and copper rose 2 cents to $2.71 per pound.

   The dollar fell to 108.10 Japanese yen from 108.34 yen on Tuesday. The euro 
strengthened to $1.1223 from $1.1206. 


(BE)

 
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