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US stocks mostly lower as energy companies slide

U.S. stocks are mostly lower Friday as investors continue to sell phone and utility stocks, and energy companies trade lower as the price of oil slips. Consumer and technology companies are making modest gains, however.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average shed 23 points, or 0.1 percent, to 18,574 as of 11:30 a.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 4 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,182. The Nasdaq composite rose 5 points, or 0.1 percent, to 5,245. Some of the biggest losses Friday went to phone and utility companies. They surged at the beginning of the year as the market tumbled. They’ve lagged the market during its big recovery and are falling this week, but they are still among best performing parts of the market in 2016.

ENERGY: Oil’s rally fizzled out and benchmark U.S. crude slid 11 cents to $48.11 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, lost 45 cents to $50.44 a barrel in London. Oil has climbed almost 16 percent over a six-day string of gains. Chevron lost $1.17, or 1.1 percent, to $102.38 and Exxon Mobil retreated 93 cents, or 1 percent, to $87.98.

KEEP SHOPPING: Consumer companies traded higher. Some of the largest gains went to Foot Locker, which reported stronger results than analysts expected. The shoe store climbed $6.42, or 10.4 percent, to $68.10. Nike also gained $1.66, or 2.9 percent, to $58.87. Discount retailer Ross Stores raised its profit projections after it surpassed Wall Street estimates in the second quarter, and its stock rose $3.30, or 5.2 percent, to $66.18.

CHIP OFF THE OLD BLOCK: Applied Materials advanced after the manufacturer of chipmaking equipment disclosed new orders and a contract backlog that were much stronger than analysts had forecast. Its stock rose $1.82, or 6.6 percent, to $29.50. That helped pull technology companies higher. Tech stocks have staged a big recovery in recent months, and they’re part of the reason the Nasdaq is on a seven-week winning streak.

BONDS, CURRENCIES: Bond prices declined and the yield on the 10-year Treasury note jumped to 1.59 percent from 1.54 percent. The dollar edged higher after it recent losses and rose to 100.23 yen. The dollar finished at 99.98 yen Thursday, its first time below 100 yen since October 2013. The euro dipped to $1.1319 from $1.1354.

NOT FEELING PRETTY: Beauty products maker Estee Lauder skidded after its profit forecast for the current quarter and the new fiscal year fell far short of estimates. Estee Lauder stock lost $3.35, or 3.5 percent, to $91.75.

VALUING VALVES: Emerson Electric agreed to buy buying Pentair’s valves and controls business for $3.15 billion. Pentair acquired that business from Tyco International in 2012 as part of a larger deal between those companies and said it had $1.8 billion in revenue in 2015. Emerson stock fell $2.10, or 3.8 percent, to $52.57 and Pentair gave up 98 cents, or 1.5 percent, to $65.55.

OH DEERE: Farm equipment maker Deere posted strong results and raised its outlook for the year. The company has been cutting costs as farmers struggle with smaller profits on corn and soybeans thanks to large harvests. Its stock added $8.28, or 10.8 percent, to $85.26.

OVERSEAS: France’s CAC 40 shed 0.5 percent and Germany’s DAX lost 0.8 percent. The FTSE in Britain slipped 0.2 percent. Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 index added 0.4 percent as the yen got a bit weaker, easing pressure on shares of the country’s export manufacturers. The yen’s recent rise has made Japan’s exports more expensive and complicated efforts to revive growth. South Korea’s Kospi edged up less than 0.1 percent and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng shed 0.4 percent.


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