US stocks end low on earning concerns

January 6th, 2009 - 8:55 am ICT by IANS  

Barack ObamaNew York, Jan 6 (Xinhua) US stocks ended lower Monday as concerns about a decline in corporate profits overshadowed the prospect that President-elect Barack Obama’s tax cut plan will help avert the economic downturn.Dow Jones ended below 9,000 points on the first real trading day of 2009 considered by traders.

Wireless telecom and financials are Monday’s losers. AT&T Inc. and Verizon Communications Inc. registered losses as Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. said the recession will hurt growth in wireless subscribers.

Moreover, JPMorgan Chase, the largest US bank, slipped after Deutsche Bank AG analyst cut its earnings estimate for the fourth quarter.

Concerns about corporate earnings offset sentiment buoyed by tax breaks. President-elect Barack Obama’s economic stimulus package will include hundreds of billions of dollars worth of tax cuts for individuals and businesses, according to a Democratic aide.

Oil prices rallied above $49 a barrel before settling at $48.81 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange on the Middle East tension and speculation of an OPEC emergency meeting. Energy shares gained strongly.

Apple climbed, after Steve Jobs said he is suffering from a nutritional ailment and plans to stay as the company’s chief executive officer, which alleviated concerns about his health.

The Dow Jones fell 81.80 points to 8,952.89. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index dipped 4.35 points to 927.45, and the Nasdaq composite index lost 4.18 to end at 1,628.03.

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