After moving lower early in the session, stocks have seen some further downside over the course of the trading day on Tuesday. The major averages have slid firmly into negative territory, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq pulling back off the record closing high set last Friday.
Currently, the major averages are off their worst levels of the day but stuck in the red. The Dow is down 143.08 points or 0.7 percent at 21,844.48, the Nasdaq is down 38.94 points or 0.6 percent at 6,396.39 and the S&P 500 is down 11.96 points or 0.5 percent at 2,464.59.
The pullback on Wall Street partly reflects geopolitical concerns following news North Korea conducted a major nuclear test on Sunday.
President Donald Trump condemned the nuclear test in posts on Twitter, saying North Korea’s words and actions continue to be very hostile and dangerous to the U.S.
Trump said the U.S. is considering stopping all trade with any country doing business with North Korea in response to the test.
Traders are also keeping an eye on any developments in Washington, as lawmakers return following the August recess.
Lawmakers are under pressure to raise the debt ceiling and pass a government spending bill before deadlines at the end of the month.
On the U.S. economic front, the Commerce Department released a report showing a sharp pullback in factory orders in the month of July.
The Commerce Department said factory orders plunged by 3.3 percent in July after surging up by an upwardly revised 3.2 percent in June.
Economists had expected orders to tumble by 3.2 percent compared to the 3.0 percent jump originally reported for the previous month.
Telecom stocks have shown a significant move to the downside on the day, dragging the NYSE Arca Telecom Index down by 2.3 percent. With the drop, the index has fallen to its lowest intraday level in over a year.
Qualcomm (QCOM), CenturyLink (CTL), and Telephone and Data Systems (TDS) are turning in some of the telecom sector’s worst performances.
Considerable weakness also remains visible among financial stocks, with the Dow Jones Banks Index and the NYSE Arca Broker/Dealer Index slumping by 1.8 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively.
Tobacco, networking, and semiconductor stocks are also seeing notable weakness in mid-day trading, while oil service and gold stocks are bucking the downtrend on Wall Street.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region turned in a mixed performance during trading on Tuesday. Japan’s Nikkei 225…