The stock markets in the United States declined due to the weakness of equities in the biotechnology sector. The NASDAQ fell 0.63%, the Dow Jones dropped 0.23%, and the S&P 500 slid 0.41%.

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Commenting on the market trends, Michael Abronelli, an institutional equity trader at Robert W. Baird & Co. told Bloomberg, “You’ve got biotechnology down here now, leading everything lower. The market obviously wants to go higher, but it’s struggling to make its way, to get that breakout and confirm it.”

Last week, the NASDAQ reached an all-time high that surpassed its highest closing level in 2000—the dot com era. The strong performance of the index was driven by the rally of the shares of Amazon.com, Google, and Microsoft after report each reported solid financial results.

Tomorrow, the Federal Reserve will begin its two-day meeting. Investors will look for signs regarding the timing of interest rate increases. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg do not expect the central bank to increase interest rates this week.

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Edward Jones Investment Strategist, Kate Warne commented that the market is cautious ahead of the meeting of the Federal Reserve. She also observed that corporate earnings are not as bad as expected.

Warne said, “The stock market performance this earnings season is all about numbers beating lowered expectations. There is also less worry about Greece, while a combination of better economic news and ECB’s quantitative easing are underpinning prices.”

On the other hand, IG Chief Market Strategist, Chris Wenston wrote in a note to investors, Judging by the moves in the tech giant last week, the market believes the eight consecutive quarterly earnings beats will continue. Expect a sizable increase to its previously announced buyback.”

U.S. Markets

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) – 18,038.44 (-0.23%)
  • S&P 500- 2,108.94 (-0.41%)
  • NASDAQ- 5,060.25 (-0.63%)
  • Russell 2000- 1,251.55 (-1.26%)

European Markets

  • EURO STOXX 50 Price EUR- 3,771.45 (+1.55%)
  • FTSE 100 Index- 7,103.98 (+0.47%)
  • Deutsche Borse AG German Stock Index DAX- 12,039.16 (+1.93%)

Asia-Pacific Markets

  • Nikkei 225- 19,983.32 (-0.18%)
  • Hong Kong Hang Seng Index- 28,433.59 (+1.33%)
  • Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index- 4,807.59 (+2.23%)

Stocks in Focus

The stock price of Applied Materials declined more than 8% to $19.98 per share. The company abandoned its plan to acquire Tokyo Electron Ltd for $9.39 billion. The U.S. Department of Justice opposed the deal.

E I Du Pont De Nemours And Co gained more than 4% to $74.81 per share. The Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) endorsed two of the nominees of Trian Fund to the company’s board of directors. The ISS believes that having a Trian representative on Dupont’s board will “add strong, well-informed, and constructive voice for shareholders.”

The shares of Mylan dropped almost 6% to $71.66 per share after its board of directors unanimously rejected the takeover proposal of Teva Pharmaceuticals. The Board believe that the takeover proposal “grossly undervalues” Mylan. The stock price of Teva fell more than 4% to $61.63 per share.

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