by Chris Ugwu
US stocks fell as comments by Donald Trump critical of pharmaceutical pricing sent health-care shares lower. The dollar trimmed its advance, while Treasuries erased losses as investors look for clues on the conviction behind the presidentelect’s policy proclamations.
According to Bloomberg, the S&P 500 Index turned lower after Trump suggested changes to how America pays for its prescription drugs.
Pfizer Inc. and Johnson & Johnson led declines in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note slipped to 2.36 per cent.
The dollar trimmed by more than half a gain of 0.8 per cent, while the three worst-performing major currencies of 2017, the pound, Mexican peso and Turkish lira, extended their slide.
Oil rose past $52 a barrel. Trump comments critical of drugmakers were the latest salvo from the presidentelect to target specific industries that have roiled equities.
Investors looked to Trump’s first press conference since July for details on the timing and scope of planned policies from infrastructure spending to trade pacts that will set the tone on financial markets in 2017.
The dollar and stocks have been stuck in a month long rut since the Federal Reserve’s rate decision after speculation Trump will pursue a pro-growth agenda unencumbered by backlash from any protectionist moves sparked the rallies that drove American equities to records and the dollar to a 14-year high.
The S&P 500 fell 0.1 per cent in New York. The index is up almost 6 per cent since Trump’s election, though it’s virtually unchanged since December 13, the day before the Fed decision.
The Dow all but erased a gain of 117.89 points to trade little changed at 19,858. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index, a gauge of the greenback against 10 major peers, gained 0.7 per cent to match the level it held the day after the Fed’s rate hike.