A trader works at the New York Stock Exchange in New York, the United States, on Nov. 4, 2019. U.S. stocks ended higher on Monday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 114.75 points, or 0.42 percent, to 27,462.11. The S&P 500 rallied 11.36 points, or 0.37 percent, to 3,078.27. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 46.80 points, or 0.56 percent, to 8,433.20. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)
A trader works at the New York Stock Exchange in New York, the United States, on Nov. 4, 2019. U.S. stocks ended higher on Monday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 114.75 points, or 0.42 percent, to 27,462.11. The S&P 500 rallied 11.36 points, or 0.37 percent, to 3,078.27. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 46.80 points, or 0.56 percent, to 8,433.20. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)

U.S. equities declined in the week featuring the release of the Federal Reserve’s January meeting minutes and a slew of key economic data.

For the week ending Feb. 21, the Dow fell 1.38 percent, the S&P 500 shed 1.25 percent, and the Nasdaq Composite decreased 1.59 percent. The major averages snapped a two-week winning streak.

Tech shares suffered massive setbacks, with the sector down more than 2.5 percent for the week, becoming the biggest loser in the S&P 500 index.

Apple stock booked a weekly loss of 3.7 percent after the company issued a warning over its quarterly revenue. Shares of other tech giants including Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google-parent Alphabet also struggled for the week.

The U.S. central bank released the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s Jan. 28-29 meeting Wednesday afternoon. The filing indicated that Fed officials were largely content with the interest rate policy and showed little intention of further easing in the foreseeable future.

Traders have been pricing in at least one rate cut from the Fed for this year, according to CME Group’s FedWatch tool.

Wall Street continued to weigh the potential impact of the novel coronavirus outbreak.

On the data front, flash U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) registered 50.8 in February from 51.9 in January, marking a six-month low, London-based global information provider IHS Markit reported Friday.

The seasonally adjusted IHS Markit Flash U.S. Services PMI Business Activity Index registered 49.4 in February, down from 53.4 in January.

“Weakness was primarily seen in the service sector, where the first drop in activity for four years was reported, but manufacturing production also ground almost to a halt due to a near-stalling of orders,” said Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit, while commenting on the flash PMI data.

Companies also reported increased caution in respect to spending due to worries about a wider economic slowdown and uncertainty ahead of the 2020 U.S. presidential election, Williamson noted.

On other data, U.S. initial jobless claims, a rough way to measure layoffs, registered 210,000 for the week ending Feb. 15, an increase of 4,000 from the previous week’s revised level, the Department of Labor reported Thursday. The previous week’s level was revised up by 1,000 from 205,000 to 206,000.

The Leading Economic Index for the United States increased 0.8 percent in January to 112.1, following a 0.3 percent decline in December 2019 and a 0.1 percent increase in November 2019, said New York-based The Conference Board.

U.S. Producer Price Index rose 0.5 percent in January, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Wednesday.

U.S. housing starts dropped 3.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.567 million units last month, said the Commerce Department. Enditem

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