NEW YORK: US stocks slipped on Tuesday as a drop in oil prices hit energy stocks, with uncertainty over Republican tax plans also weighing on the sentiment.
Oil prices eased for a third day after rising US output overshadowed some of the optimism that Opec-led production cuts would tighten the balance between crude supply and demand.
The S&P energy index fell 0.76% as Range Resources and Baker Hughes led losses in the sector.
With the quarterly earnings season winding down, the market has taken a breather after its rally to record highs last week.
Investors are waiting for any signs of compromise on US tax policy after Senate Republicans unveiled a plan last week that would cut corporate taxes a year later than a rival House of Representatives’ bill.
“You’re at the end of the earnings season, economic data is all distorted because of the hurricanes, I don’t think there is going to be any clear picture until we get a firm yes or no for the tax bill,” Scott Brown, chief economist at Raymond James in St Petersburg, Florida.
At 9:39am ET (1339 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 60.85 points, or 0.26%, at 23,378.85, the S&P 500 was down 9.31 points, or 0.36%, at 2,575.53 and the Nasdaq Composite was down 26.93 points, or 0.4%, at 6,730.66.
Shares in Home Depot held steady, while those in off-price retailer TJX dipped after quarterly reports that bore the impact of a violent US hurricane season.
Buffalo Wild Wings surged 25% after a report that the restaurant chain had received a takeover bid at about US$2.3bil from private equity Roark Capital Group.
Advance Auto Parts soared 19% after the auto parts retailer affirmed full-year profit forecast and beat quarterly profit estimates.
Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 1,791 to 805. On the Nasdaq, 1,518 issues fell and 821 advanced. - Reuters