Stronger dollar weighs on oil; Dow drops 1 percent

Fri May 13, 2016 4:20pm EDT
 
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By Lewis Krauskopf

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. dollar rose to a more than two-week high against a basket of currencies on Friday following strong U.S. economic data, putting pressure on oil prices, which fell after three days of gains.

Wall Street closed lower, with the Dow down 1 percent, as oil's decline dragged on energy shares. [.N]

U.S. retail sales in April recorded their biggest increase in a year as Americans stepped up purchases of automobiles and other goods, suggesting the economy was regaining momentum.

But countering that optimism were tepid quarterly results from department store operators Nordstrom and J.C. Penney, following weak reports from other retailers earlier in the week.

The S&P consumer discretionary sector fell 1.1 percent and consumer staples shares dropped 1.2 percent.

"Certainly this week there were enough data points that caused some concern with investors regarding the health of the consumer and, ergo, the health of the overall economy," said Chuck Carlson, chief executive officer at Horizon Investment Services in Hammond, Indiana­­.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 185.18 points, or 1.05 percent, to 17,535.32, the S&P 500 lost 17.5 points, or 0.85 percent, to 2,046.61 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 19.66 points, or 0.41 percent, to 4,717.68.

The S&P and Dow inked their third straight weeks in the red, while the Nasdaq recorded a fourth straight negative week.   Continued...

 
Traders work at their desks in front of the German share price index, DAX board, at the stock exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, May 12, 2016.     REUTERS/Staff/Remote