U.S. Stocks Mostly Lower As Inflation Report Looms

Stocks have moved mostly lower during trading on Tuesday, giving back ground following the advance seen in the previous session. The major averages have all moved to the downside on the day.

Currently, the major averages are just off their lows of the session. The Nasdaq is down 73.35 points or 0.5 percent at 13,844.55, the S&P 500 is down 16.02 points or 0.4 percent at 4,471.44 and the Dow is down 65.62 points or 0.2 percent at 34,598.10.

The pullback on Wall Street comes as some traders look to cash in on yesterday’s gains ahead of the release of the Labor Department’s highly anticipated report on consumer price inflation on Wednesday.

Economists currently expect the annual rate of consumer price growth to accelerate to 3.6 percent in August from 3.2 percent in July, while the annual rate of core consumer price growth is expected to slow to 4.4 percent from 4.7 percent.

Ahead of the data, CME Group’s FedWatch Tool is currently indicating a 91.0 percent chance the Federal Reserve will leave interest rates unchanged next week.

The outlook for November is a little more uncertain, however, with the FedWatch Tool indicating a 54.8 percent chance rates will remain unchanged and a 41.6 percent chance of another quarter point rate hike.

Selling pressure has also been generated in reaction to a sharp increase by the price of crude oil, with crude for October delivery surging $1.68 to $88.97 a barrel.

News that Saudi Arabia and Russia have extended production cuts until the end of the year has recently driven oil prices higher, raising concerns about sticky inflation.

A steep drop by shares of Oracle (ORCL) is weighing on the tech-heavy Nasdaq, with the software giant plunging by 11.8 percent.

The slump by Oracle comes after the company reported weaker than expected fiscal first quarter revenues and provided disappointing revenue guidance for the current quarter.

Software stocks are seeing considerable weakness amid the steep drop by Oracle, with the Dow Jones U.S. Software Index falling by 1.6 percent.

Transportation and telecom stocks have also moved to the downside on the day, while energy stocks are moving sharply higher along with the price of crude oil.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region turned in another mixed performance during trading on Tuesday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index jumped by 1.0 percent, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index dipped by 0.2 percent.

The major European markets are also mixed on the day. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index is up by 0.4 percent, the French CAC 40 Index is down by 0.4 percent and the German DAX Index is down by 0.5 percent.

In the bond market, treasuries have shown a lack of direction over the course of the morning. Currently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is up by less than a basis point at 4.292 percent.

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