Stocks slip to weekly loss
NEW YORK — Stocks slipped on Friday, pushing the market to a weekly loss, as investors assessed the latest round of company earnings.
Express Scripts, the largest U.S. pharmacy benefits manager, fell after its fourth-quarter earnings slipped, hurt by the loss of UnitedHealth, a large customer.
Groupon plunged after the online deals company said it expects to post a loss this quarter and issued a weak outlook for the year.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose in early trading Friday and had almost wiped out its loss for the year by late morning, climbing to within two points of it record close. By late afternoon the index started to turn lower.
The stock market has gained this month after getting a boost from decent corporate earnings for the fourth quarter and optimism that the economy will start to pull out of its winter slump as the weather improves.
While investors have been willing to overlook much of the weak economic data this month, they appear reluctant to push the stock market back above its recent highs before they see firmer evidence that the economy is sustaining its recovery.
Investors are “giving the economic data points a bit of a free pass, but at the same time they're not fully convinced either,” said Robert Pavlik, chief market strategist at Banyan Partners, a wealth management firm.
The S&P 500 index fell 3.53 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,836.25.
The index lost 2.38 points for the week and is now 12 points below its record close of 1,848.38, set Jan. 15.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 29.93 points, or 0.2 percent, to 16,103.30. The Nasdaq composite dropped 4.13 points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,263.41.
Among individual stocks, Express Scripts fell $3.11, or 4 percent, to $74.01 after it reported its results.
Groupon plunged $2.25, or 21.9 percent, to $8.03.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.