Unemployment claims down

Stocks Pare Losses as Attention Shifts to CPI Data

The Dow Jones and S&P 500 declined at the start of the week while the Nasdaq erased losses.

The Dow and broader U.S. stock market traded lower on Monday, as fears over rising inflation its implications on monetary policy weighed on investors’ sentiment.

Wall Street’s major indices were mixed at the close, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DIA) declining 162.79 points, or 0.5%, to 36,068.87.

The broad S&P 500 Index (SPY) of large-cap stocks fell 0.1% to settle at 4,670.29. Most sectors finished in negative territory.

Meanwhile, the technology-focused Nasdaq Composite Index (QQQ) rose 0.1% to close at 14,942.83.

A measure of implied volatility known as the CBOE VIX (VXX) rose on Monday. The so-called “investor fear index” reached an intraday high of 23.33 on a scale of 1-100, where 20 represents the historical average. It would eventually settle up 3.4% at 19.40.

In commodities, oil prices declined on Monday, as U.S. West Texas Intermediate futures fell 48 cents, or 0.6%, to $78.42 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent, the international futures contract, declined 81 cents, or 1%, to $80.94 a barrel.

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In precious metals, gold prices rose, as the February futures contract advanced $3.90, or 0.2%, to $1,801.30 a troy ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. Silver futures gained 9 cents, or 0.4%, to trade at $22.50 a troy ounce.

The Final Word: Economic data will dominate the headlines this week as the Labor Department is set to report on the consumer price index on Wednesday. Headline CPI is expected to come in at 7.1% year-over-year in December.