Banks slip, drag­ging in­dexes down

Boul­der-based Ar­ray BioPharma fell af­ter it with­drew a mar­ket­ing ap­pli­ca­tion for its melanoma drug.

The Denver Post - - BUSINESS - By Mar­ley Jay

Af­ter an early-af­ter­noon slump, U.S. stocks fin­ished mostly lower Mon­day in a quiet day of trad­ing. Banks fell along with bond yields as stocks de­clined for a third straight day.

Lower bond yields hurt banks be­cause they force in­ter­est rates down on mort­gages and other kinds of loans. Util­ity com­pa­nies gave up some of their re­cent gains.

Most sec­tors didn’t move much on the light­est trad­ing day of the year. Euro­pean mar­kets mostly fell af­ter the Bri­tish gov­ern­ment said it will for­mally be­gin the process of leav­ing the Euro­pean Union next week.

Sameer Samana, a strate­gist for the Wells Fargo In­vest­ment In­sti­tute, said pol­i­tics may keep in­vestors oc­cu­pied for the next few weeks as they wait for elec­tions in France and a Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank meet­ing, both next month, while leg­is­la­tors in the U.S. de­bate the pro­posed Repub­li­can­backed health care law.

“There’s enough events that will keep mar­kets busy,” Samana said. He added that in­vestors want to see tax re­form pro­pos­als be­cause they could boost cor­po­rate prof­its, but those aren’t likely to come un­til the health care bill is dealt with.

The Stan­dard & Poor’s 500 in­dex lost 4.78 points, or 0.2 per­cent, to 2,373.47. The Dow Jones in­dus­trial av­er­age slipped 8.76 points to 20,905.86. The Nas­daq com­pos­ite rose 0.53 points to 5,901.53. The Rus­sell 2000 of small-com­pany stocks fell 7.43 points, or 0.5 per­cent, to 1,384.10.

The stock market has mostly been quiet this month. Its two big moves were both linked to the Fed­eral Re­serve: on March 1 stocks jumped af­ter the cen­tral bank sig­naled it would raise rates, and they climbed last Wed­nes­day af­ter the Fed made it clear it will move slowly for the rest of the year.

Bond prices rose, send yields to their low­est in three weeks. The yield on the 10year Trea­sury note fell to 2.46 per­cent from 2.50 per­cent.

Wells Fargo fell $1.04, or 1.8 per­cent, to $57.63 and Syn­chrony Fi­nan­cial gave up 92 cents, or 2.6 per­cent, to $34.20.

The Bri­tish pound slipped to $1.2350 from $1.2396 late Fri­day, and it’s down about 20 per­cent since Bri­tain voted to leave the EU in late June. The dol­lar de­clined to 112.58 yen from 112.70 yen. The euro fell to $1.0733 from $1.0743.

Bench­mark U.S. crude de­clined 56 cents, or 1.1 per­cent, to $48.22 a bar­rel in New York. Brent crude, used to price in­ter­na­tional oils, lost 14 cents to $51.62 a bar­rel in London.

Boul­der-based Ar­ray BioPharma fell 29 cents, or 2.7 per­cent, to $10.27 af­ter it with­drew a mar­ket­ing ap­pli­ca­tion for its melanoma drug binime­tinib. Af­ter Ar­ray talked to reg­u­la­tors, the com­pany said it was clear they wouldn’t ap­prove the drug based on its most re­cent trial. It will con­tinue stud­ies of binime­tinib.

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