A day after Dow and S&P hit record high levels, the stocks at the Wall Street dropped on Tuesday, as Nasdaq retreated after hitting a 15-year milestone after cold car sales data and commentary by Iran raised high concerns among some investors.
The decrease in US stocks followed a strong run-up for key indexes in the month of February and ahead of a series of economic data to be released later this week, concluding with the monthly payrolls report.
The American vehicle sales slowed down for the second year in a row in February, thanks to the tough winter weather conditions. Several automakers missed the projections made by the market analysts. The shares of US-listed Fiat Chrysler dropped three percent to USD 15.32, while Ford Motor fell 2.5 percent to USD 16.16.
On Wednesday morning, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cautioned US President Barack Obama against approving a nuclear agreement with Iran. According to him, the deal would be a “countdown to a potential nuclear nightmare by a country that will always be an enemy of America.”
The S&P 500 fell 0.48 percent, or 10.14 points, to 2,107.25, while the Dow Jones industrial average dropped 0.45 percent, or 82.17 points, to 18,206.46. On the other hand, the Nasdaq Composite declined 0.64 percent, or 32.01 points, to 4,976.08.
Decliners outnumbered advancers 1,818 to 1,193, for a 1.52-to-1 ratio on the NYSE, 1,744 issues dropped and 954 advanced, for a 1.83-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P 500 was recording nine new 52-week highs and no new lows, while the Nasdaq Composite was posting 27 new lows and 63 new highs.