U.S. stocks were lower on Thursday as a drop in Apple shares weighed, a day after the tech giant unveiled the new iPhone 7 that failed to impress Wall Street. Apple fell 2.2 percent to $105.98, its steepest decline since June 24 when the markets witnessed a broad selloff following the Brexit vote result.
The S&P 500 information technology index fell 0.6 percent and was the biggest loser among the benchmark’s 10 major sectors.
However, oil prices soared more than 3 percent, limiting some losses on Wall Street. The S&P energy index rose 1.18 percent.
Investor reaction to a drop in weekly jobless claims and the European Central Bank’s expected decision to leave rates and stimulus program unchanged was largely muted.
“We’ve had a witch’s brew of seasonality, political and central bank risk,” said Rob Bartenstein, chief executive officer of Kestra Private Wealth Services in San Diego.
“The overall picture is relatively cloudy as a result.”
U.S. stocks have been trading in a tight range in recent months, even as they hover near record levels, due to growing uncertainty over interest rates.
The S&P 500 index has not moved more than 1 percent in either direction on a daily basis since July 8.
At 10:29 a.m. ET the Dow Jones industrial average was down 56.13 points, or 0.3 percent, at 18,470.01.
The S&P 500 was down 6.2 points, or 0.28 percent, at 2,179.96.
The Nasdaq Composite was down 24.01 points, or 0.45 percent, at 5,259.91, on track to end in the red after four days of gains.
Six of the 10 major S&P 500 indexes were lower, but the defensive sectors including utilities and telecom services were among the gainers.
Tractor Supply plunged 16 percent to $70.21 after the home improvement and pet care products retailer lowered its full-year forecast. The stock was the top percentage loser on the S&P.
Tesla fell 1.5 percent to $198.63 after Cowen & Co began coverage of the stock with an “underperform” rating.
AbbVie was down 2.1 percent after JPMorgan downgraded the drugmaker’s stock to “neutral” from “overweight”
Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the New York Stock Exchange by 1,695 to 1,039. On the Nasdaq, 1,488 issues fell and 1,015 advanced.
The S&P 500 index showed 10 new 52-week highs and two new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 53 new highs and 11 new lows.