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S&P 500 Edges Lower on Risks Linked to U.S Economy Reopening

The S&P 500 dipped in choppy trading on Tuesday, dropping 2% as the risks of reopening the economy too soon overshadowed hopes of a jump-start to a battered global economy, following an easing of virus-led business shutdown.

The index suffered its first decline in four sessions as investors weighed the potential for a second wave of virus infections against hopes that easing of stay-at-home restrictions could ignite a recovery in the U.S. economy, which has been severely damaged by the virus

Wall Street’s fear gauge slipped for the fourth day running, hitting a ten-week low, even as data showed U.S. consumer prices in April dropped by the most since the Great Recession.

Among the 11 major sectors, financial stocks, which generally lag when the economic outlook dims, weighed the most on the S&P 500.

Wall Street’s three major averages closed around their session lows. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 457.21 points, or 1.89%, to 23,764.78, the S&P 500 lost 60.2 points, or 2.05%, to 2,870.12 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 189.79 points, or 2.06%, to 9,002.55.

The Cboe Volatility Index, known as Wall Street’s fear gauge, ended 5.47 points higher at 33.04. It was the biggest one-day point gain for the VIX in more than three weeks. Among the S&P’s 11 major sectors, real estate was the biggest percentage decliner with a 4.3% drop.

Industrial and financials were the next biggest laggards with respective declines of 2.8% and 2.7%Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a 2.91-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 2.65-to-1 ratio favored decliners.

The S&P 500 posted nine new 52-week highs and two new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 91 new highs and 42 new lows. On U.S. exchanges 11.28 billion shares changed hands compared with the 11.36 billion average for the last 20 sessions.