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Overnight Markets: Wall Street closes mostly lower as oil prices fall

Overnight Markets: Wall Street closes mostly lower as oil prices fall

Wall Street closed mostly lower on Wednesday, giving up early gains, as oil prices cratered, dragging the energy sector sharply lower, and resolution of the US-China trade war remained elusive.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 101 points, or 0.4%, to 25,286. The S&P 500 fell four points, or 0.2%, to 2,722, while the Nasdaq Composite Index closed flat at 7,201.

Shares gained early in the session as large-capitalisation technology stocks apparently regained footing after the Dow and the Nasdaq suffered triple digit losses in the previous session. However, the index failed to take advantage of the early momentum.

Energy stocks plunged, weighing heavily on the S&P 500, driven down after crude prices fell 7.2%. President Donald Trump may have also helped to exacerbate a selloff in crude-oil prices after he voiced disapproval over a potential production cut by Saudi Arabia and OPEC.

Meanwhile, hopes over moderation in trade tensions remained grim after media reports that Trump was focusing on imposing tariffs on automobile imports. China President Xi Jinping and Trump are expected to meet at a G20 summit in Argentina at the end of November.

Boeing Co dropped 2.1% on concerns related to last month's deadly crash of a 737 operated by Indonesia's Lion Air.  

Technology bounced back from recent losses, edging the Nasdaq into positive territory. Tariff-vulnerable industrial stocks were up 0.3%, led by General Electric Co and Caterpillar Inc.

General Electric was up 7.9% as the conglomerate unveiled plans to raise $4 billion by accelerating a sale of its stake in oilfield services provider Baker Hughes.

Homebuilder Beazer Homes USA Inc jumped 30.34% after its quarterly revenue topped estimates and the company announced a $50 million buyback scheme.

Amazon.com shares were down 0.35% following the online retailer's announcement that it had selected New York City and Northern Virginia for its two new headquarters.

In Asia, shares were trading in mixed territory on Wednesday in the morning after a turbulent trading session overnight on Wall Street.

Japan's Nikkei 225 saw gains of 0.51% in early trading action while South Korea's Kospi was lower by about 0.3%.

In Australia, the ASX 200 slipped 0.37% in morning trade. In China, the Shanghai Composite Index was down 0.37%, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell 0.56%.


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