U.S. stocks edged lower in early trading Tuesday, giving up some of their big gains from a day earlier, when the market notched its best day in eight months. Investors had their eye on the tight U.S. presidential race as voters headed to the polls. Financial and health care companies were among the biggest decliners, while telecom and utilities stocks bucked the broader market slide.
KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average slid 45 points, or 0.3 percent, to 18,214 as of 10:09 a.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 6 points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,124. The Nasdaq composite index lost 15 points, or 0.3 percent, to 5,150. The stock market was coming off its biggest gain since March on Monday, when it snapped a nine-day losing streak.
GENERAL ELECTION: Hillary Clinton entered Election Day with multiple paths to victory, while rival Donald Trump must prevail in most of the battleground states to reach 270 Electoral College votes. Control of the Senate was also at stake. The market soared on Monday as Clinton’s chances for winning the presidency appeared to improve. Investors like certainty, and Clinton has been seen by the market as likely to maintain the status quo. Trump’s policies are less clear, and the uncertainty and uncomfortable closeness of the polls has caused jitters in financial markets.
BUMPY RIDE: Hertz plunged 50.3 percent after the car rental company’s latest quarterly earnings came up far short of what analysts anticipated. The stock slid $17.99 to $17.75.
DASHED EXPECTATIONS: CVS Health tumbled 13.4 percent after the drugstore chain and pharmacy benefits manager’s third-quarter revenue fell short of Wall Street’s expectations. The company also trimmed its outlook. The stock shed $11.21 to $72.18.
ROUGH QUARTER: Valeant Pharmaceuticals International slumped 21.5 percent after the Canadian drugmaker reported a third-quarter loss. The company also slashed its guidance as it continues to face scrutiny over its business practices. The stock lost $4.10 to $15.02.
GLOBAL TRADE: China’s exports fell again in October in a fresh sign of weak global demand that is complicating Beijing’s efforts to shore up economic growth and reduce reliance on trade and investment. Exports contracted by 7.3 percent from a year earlier while imports fell 1.4 percent. Similarly downbeat figures emerged from Germany, where exports dropped 0.7 percent in September over August, while imports fell 0.5 percent in season- and calendar-adjusted terms.
MARKETS OVERSEAS: In Europe, Germany’s DAX was 0.3 percent lower, while France’s CAC-40 was down 0.3 percent. London’s FTSE 100 was up 0.1 percent. Earlier in Asia, stock indexes closed mostly higher. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.5 percent, while Seoul’s Kospi added 0.3 percent. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 was little changed.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude was down 33 cents, or 0.7 percent, at $44.56 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, was down 26 cents, or 0.5 percent, at $45.91 a barrel in London.
BONDS AND CURRENCIES: Bond prices edged higher. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.82 percent from 1.83 percent late Monday. In currency markets, the dollar rose to 104.80 yen from Monday’s 104.58 yen. The euro gained to $1.1045 from $1.1040. The Mexican peso, which has become an indirect proxy among investors for Trump’s chances to win the White House, lost ground to the dollar. The U.S. currency fell to 18.61 Mexican pesos from 18.68 pesos.