www.timesleader.com News Sports Weather Obituaries Features Business People Opinion Video Contact Us Classifieds

Oil, concerns over earnings drag down stocks

NEW YORK — Wall Street pulled back Tuesday, as a rush of quarterly results from bellwethers like AT&T Inc., DuPont and McDonald’s Corp. failed to impress investors. Oil prices also reached fresh highs, raising concerns about inflation.

AT&T’s earnings met Wall Street’s forecast while McDonald’s and DuPont reported stronger-than-expected numbers. But DuPont said a U.S. slowdown will offset growth abroad and McDonald’s said an important metric of its sales showed a decline for March. All three companies are among the 30 stocks that make up the Dow.

With hundreds of companies still to report results, investors are anxious over what the figures might say about the economy’s future.

“We’ve melted here, but it isn’t a plunge,” said Art Hogan, chief market analyst at Jefferies & Co.

Investors appeared little moved by news of continued weakness in the housing sector. Sales of existing homes fell 2 percent in March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.93 million units, while the median sales price dropped for a seventh straight month. The National Association of Realtors also said sales rose in the Northeast and West but fell in the Midwest and South.

Light, sweet crude for May delivery rose as high as $119.90 barrel, then slipped back to settle at $119.37, up $1.89. Some of the latest earnings reports appeared to confirm concerns about the economy, analysts said.

The Weekender Go Lackawanna Timesleader The Dallas Post Tunkhannock Times Impressions Media The Abington Journal Hazelton Times Five Mountain Times El Mensajero Pittston Sunday Dispatch Creative Circle Media Image Map