NEW YORK: Wall Street stocks finished essentially flat on Tuesday (May 8) as shareholders tried to assess the potential fallout from President Donald Trump’s decision to pull the US out of the Iran nuclear accord.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the session 2.89 points (0.01 per cent) higher at 24,360.21.
The broad-based S&P 500 slipped 0.71 points (0.03 per cent) to 2,671.92, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index edged up 1.69 points (0.02 per cent) higher to 7,266.90.
Trump lambasted the 2015 Iran deal as “disastrous” and vowed to reimpose crippling sanctions on Tehran, winning praise from Saudi Arabia and Israel, and much criticism from other sectors, in addition to disagreement from traditional US allies in Europe.
US stocks were mostly negative throughout the session, but avoided major swings.
“Maybe people learned that what Trump says the first time is not what happens at the end of the day,” said Maris Ogg of Tower Bridge Advisors. “It may be part of the negotiation.”
“Anyway, these nebulous things don’t generally have an impact on the market until we see a concrete event,” she added.
Most leading oil-linked shares rose amid prospects that revived sanctions on Iran could lift commodity prices. Chevron and ConocoPhillips gained more than 1.0 per cent and ExxonMobil advanced 0.5 per cent.
Boeing, which had declared contracts with Iranian companies, fell 0.61 per cent. But General Electric, which also was pursuing business in Iran, rose 1.4 per cent.
Citigroup surged 3.7 per cent following news activist fund ValueAct Capital Management built a US$1.2 billion stake in the bank.