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U.S. Stocks Slip Amid Volatility in Tech Shares

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11/16/2018 | 04:19pm CET

By Christopher Whittall

A handful of disappointing earnings sent the S&P 500 lower Friday, putting the broad index on pace for its worst week of the month.

The S&P 500 fell 0.4% shortly after the opening bell, sending the index down 2.3% for the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 85 points, 0.3%, to 25203, while the Nasdaq Composite fell further, declining 0.9%, due to its tech-heavy exposure.

Chip maker Nvidia fell 19% after it reported quarterly sales below analyst expectations and provided downbeat forecasts for the current quarter, making it the worst-performing stock in the S&P 500. Applied Materials, another semiconductor company, fell nearly 7% after it offered investors disappointing guidance.

Losses among consumer stocks contributed to the pressure. Nordstrom shares tumbled 7.1% after the retailer said a multimillion-dollar charge related to delinquent credit-card debt ate into its profit. Other retailers also sank, with shares of Macy's and Kohl's sliding.

Elsewhere, the Stoxx Europe 600 falling 0.6%, as Brexit continued to loom over markets in the region.

Investors in Europe remained focused on the latest U.K. political developments following several resignations from Prime Minister Theresa May's government. That caused European stocks and the British pound to sink Thursday as concerns grew that the U.K.'s planned format for leaving the European Union was unraveling.

The pound stabilized Friday after there were no fresh resignations. Sterling was up 0.6% against the dollar, after notching its largest daily decline in over two years Thursday. But U.K. banking shares remained under pressure after registering hefty declines on Thursday, with Royal Bank of Scotland falling nearly 4%. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 index fell 0.8%, the worst-performing major index in the region.

Brexit "will remain very important for U.K. assets," said Salman Ahmed, chief investment strategist at Lombard Odier Investment Managers. Markets will likely "put pressure" on U.K. politicians as they seek to come to an agreement on leaving the EU, he added.

In Asia, China's Shanghai Composite Index closed 0.4% higher, while South Korea's Kospi index advanced 0.2%. Japan's Nikkei Stock Average fell 0.6%.

In bond markets, the yield on the 10-year Treasury note inched lower at 3.102%, according to Tradeweb. Yields move inversely to prices.

In currencies, the WSJ Dollar Index, which measures the buck against a basket of 16 other currencies, was slightly lower.

--Michael Wursthorn contributed to this article.

Write to Christopher Whittall at christopher.whittall@wsj.com

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
CHINA-SHANGHAI COMP 1.36% 2668.17 End-of-day quote.-19.49%
DJ INDUSTRIAL 0.24% 25350.71 Delayed Quote.1.46%
FTSE 100 INDEX 0.28% 7234.11 End-of-day quote.-5.90%
KOSPI COMPOSITE INDEX 0.99% 2092.51 Real-time Quote.-15.81%
NASDAQ 100 -0.67% 6844.179 Delayed Quote.6.76%
NASDAQ COMP. -0.54% 7219.3184 Delayed Quote.4.31%
NIKKEI 225 -0.56% 21683.58 Real-time Quote.-4.19%
S&P 500 -0.03% 2729.1 Delayed Quote.1.05%
US DOLLAR INDEX 0.13% 96.93 End-of-day quote.5.52%
WTI -0.05% 56.38 Delayed Quote.-1.91%
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