Stocks pared most of their earlier losses in late trading to finish the day well off the session lows. However, investors are expected to remain cautious amid renewed worries over the euro zone.
The Dow Jones ended the day 0.30% lower at 13,944.05, the S&P 500 ended the day 0.18% lower at 1,509.39, and the Nasdaq ended the day 0.11% lower at 3,165.13.
Energy sector led the losses in the S&P 500 in trading today, ending the day 0.97% lower. Basic Materials sector also fell sharply in trading today, ending the day 0.56% lower. Healthcare sector ended the day 0.79% lower. Financials finished the day 0.49% lower. Transportation sector turned positive in late trading after trading in red for most of the day. The sector finished 0.04% higher.
Among the major movers in trading today were Akamai Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: AKAM
), which ended the day 15.20% lower at $35.26, ViaSat Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT
), which ended the day 24.03% higher at $49.29, Atmel Corporation (NASDAQ: ATML
), which ended the day 14.15% lower at $6.13, DeVry Inc. (NYSE: DV
), which ended the day 16.42% higher at $30.41, Sprint Nextel Corp. (NYSE: S
), which ended the day 0.52% lower at $5.74, O’Reilly Automotive Inc. (NASDAQ: ORLY
), which ended the day 8.05% higher at $100.04, and Teradata Corporation (NYSE: TDC
), which ended the day 7.11% lower at $61.82.
On the economic front, a report released by the Labor Department showed that initial jobless claims fell 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 366,000 last week. A separate report from the Labor Department showed that productivity fell 2% in the fourth quarter of 2012, the biggest drop in almost two years.
European markets ended mostly lower earlier today as comments from the European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi weighed down sentiments. Asian markets also fell sharply overnight.