U.S. stocks close mostly lower as coronavirus fears mount

NEW YORK, Dec. 14 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks finished mostly lower on Monday as investors worried the country's soaring COVID-19 cases would trigger additional restrictions.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 184.82 points, or 0.62 percent, to 29,861.55. The S&P 500 slid 15.97 points, or 0.44 percent, to 3,647.49. The Nasdaq Composite Index increased 62.17 points, or 0.50 percent, to 12,440.04.

Nine of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors pulled back, with energy and materials closing down 3.53 percent and 1.33 percent, respectively, leading the laggards. Consumer discretionary and technology both rose more than 0.4 percent, the only two gaining groups.

U.S.-listed Chinese companies traded mostly lower, with six of the top 10 stocks by weight in the S&P U.S. Listed China 50 index ending the day on a downbeat note.

U.S. COVID-19 infections continue to surge, forcing some states and cities to reimpose restrictions.

New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio on Monday warned New Yorkers to prepare for the possibility of a full shutdown amid a spike in COVID-19 cases.

The United States has registered more than 16.4 million confirmed cases with related deaths topping 300,000 as of Monday afternoon, showed a tally by Johns Hopkins University.

For the week ending Friday, the Dow lost 0.6 percent, the S&P 500 dropped 1 percent, and the Nasdaq fell 0.7 percent, amid coronavirus worries.

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