Wall Street Relinquishes Gains as Tech Shares Pull US Markets Lower

Michael Teague  |

Wall Street lost its grip on new highs established during the previous trading session on Friday, as the major US indices and exchanges stumbled to close out the week on a particularly low note. The rather vicious sell-off took a moment to ramp up as investors initially seemed pleased with good numbers from the Labor Department’s non-farm payrolls report that left the current 6.7 percent unemployment rate unchanged. Growth stocks in the tech and biotech spaces were largely responsible for the undertow that pulled markets lower to close out the week’s trading, however, as the NASDAQ took the hardest hit of the day, off more than 2.5 percent by the bell.

Results for Friday, April 4

●     Standard & Poor’s 500: -1.25 percent to 1,865.09

●     Dow Jones Industrial Average: -0.96 percent to 16,412.71

●     NASDAQ Exchange: -2.60 percent to 4,127.73

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●     Tech shares pulled US equities down into the red during Friay’s session, which made for a particularly rough transition for tech giant Google (GOOG) in the wake of the company’s stock split, with shares down by 4 percent just ahead of the bell. Other heavy hitters like Facebook (FB) Micron Technology (MU) , and Microsoft (MSFT) were not far behind as investors precipitated towards the exits.

●     Shipping stocks were a lonely bright spot during the day’s selling activity, with Genco Shipping and Trading (GNK) leading the way up on gains of over 25 percent.

●     Oil & gas services and pure hydraulic fracturing play Emerge Energy Services (EMES) made big gains on the day after the frac-sand producer’s stock was upgraded to “outperform” by Robert W. Baird.

●     The long-awaited debut of GrubHub ($GRUB) did not disappoint as shares added over 30 percent on their very first day of trading.

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