- The Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq declined on Thursday.
- Investors failed to bid up stocks, despite several positive trade war headlines.
- Wall Street grappled with mixed economic data, with more crucial releases on tap for Friday.
The Dow Jones headed for its third straight losing session on Thursday following a parade of all-time highs for most of November.
The trade war script flipped to a bullish narrative today, but Wall Street failed to take the bait as new data releases provided a mixed picture of the US economy.
Dow on Track for Third Straight Losing Session
Wall Street’s major indices headed toward minor declines during the week’s penultimate trading session.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 31.53 points or 0.11% to 27,789.56. The index has now shed more than 200 points since Monday’s close.
The S&P 500 recorded a similar pullback, dipping 3.36 points or 0.11% to 3,105.10.
The Nasdaq edged 3.6 points or 0.04% lower to 8,523.13.
The CBOE VIX, which measures stock market volatility, rose more than 4% to 13.3. Even so, investors didn’t rotate into risk-off assets. The gold price fell more than 0.4%, while US Treasury bond yields ticked slightly higher.
Economic Data Provide Haven from Shifting Trade War Tides
The trade war narrative continues to oscillate violently between unabashed optimism and apocalyptic pessimism, making it difficult to discern the true outlook for US-China relations. One day the trade deal lays just over the horizon; the next it may never arrive at all. Thrown to and fro by the cross-currents, investors can only cling to one constant – the trade deal, whatever the day’s narrative, hasn’t arrived.
Against this volatile geopolitical backdrop, economic data releases provide a welcome measure of tangibility. Even if the data are marred by trade war concerns, that impact can’t be completely upended by one anonymous source in a…