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US stocks slip on renewed inflation fears

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The New York Stock Exchange building is seen on March 23./AFP
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Mar 31, 2021 - 11:53 AM

NEW YORK — Wall Street stumbled at the opening Tuesday as a rise in bond yields renewed investor concerns about inflation in an economy emerging from the pandemic.

At 1440 GMT the Dow Jones Industrial Average was off 0.16 percent at 33,119.35 while the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 0.44 percent at 13,003.79.

The broad Standard & Poor’s 500 index dipped 0.23 percent to 3,961.79.

The markets reacted to a fresh uptick in the yield on 10-year Treasury bonds to 1.774 percent, the highest in 14 months.

Investors are unloading government debt “on persistent expectations for economic growth and inflation,” said Patrick O’Hare at Briefing.com

“These expectations are shining through despite concerns about the coronavirus trajectory in the US and quarter-end rebalancing that should favor bonds.”

The higher bond yields have weighed especially on technology shares which had been seen as a safe haven during the pandemic-induced economic uncertainty.

Analysts said the shift could help bank stocks, and Morgan Stanley was up 1.88 percent while Goldman Sachs added 2.12 percent.

Credit Suisse shed 3.6 percent after warning about potential losses but Japanese financial group Nomura rebounded 1.87 percent following declines Friday on a similar earnings warning.

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