Stocks Close Out a Messy Month

May saw some massive swings
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 31, 2022 4:00 PM CDT
Stocks Close Out a Messy Month
In this photo provided by the New York Stock Exchange, trader Fred DeMarco, right, works on the floor, Tuesday, May 31, 2022.   (Courtney Crow/New York Stock Exchange via AP)

Wall Street ended lower after another wobbly day on Tuesday, closing out a rocky month. The S&P 500 fell 0.6%, having recouped about half of its loss from earlier. The index managed to eke out a tiny gain for May but only after several abrupt swings. Last week the S&P 500 had its biggest weekly gain since late 2020, breaking a seven-week losing streak that nearly brought it into a bear market. Trading has been turbulent in recent weeks amid worries about a possible recession, inflation, and rising interest rates. The S&P 500 fell 26.09 points to 4,132.15. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 222.84 points, or 0.7%, to 32,990.12. The Nasdaq fell 49.74 points, or 0.4%, to 12,081.39.

The S&P 500 chalked up an 0.6% gain for May, which would bring it 13.3% below its record set early this year. But the slight move for the month belies sharp lurches down and up that shook investors along the way, the AP reports. Through mid-May, the S&P 500 tumbled to seven straight losing weeks for its longest such streak since the dot-com bubble was deflating two decades ago. Slowing data on the US economy heightened worries that high inflation will force the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates so aggressively that it will cause a recession. Some high-profile retailers also said inflation is eating into their profits, adding more urgency to the concerns.

But stocks have managed to avoid a full-blown bear market, at least so far, with the S&P 500 yet to close more than 20% below its record. On Tuesday, stocks of retailers and hotel operators were among the strongest performers. Starbucks rose 2.3% and Las Vegas Sands gained 2.6%. Some areas of the stock market that have been particularly hard hit this year also climbed, including internet-related stocks. Amazon rose 4.4%, and the Class A shares of Google's parent company gained 2.6%. The yield on the 10-year Treasury climbed to 2.84% from 2.75% late Friday.

(More stock market stories.)

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