February 3, 2010 / 6:14 PM / 8 years ago

US STOCKS-Wall St slips on renewed regulation concerns

* Obama committed to bank, health reform - shares fall

* Pfizer shares fall after results miss view

* Dow slips 0.1 pct; S&P off 0.4 pct; Nasdaq dips 0.1 pct

* For up-to-the-minute market news, click [STXNEWS/US] (Updates to early afternoon, changes byline)

By Edward Krudy

NEW YORK, Feb 3 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks fell on Wednesday after President Barack Obama reiterated his commitment to overhaul the healthcare system and impose stricter regulatory reforms on Wall Street.

The president’s comments to the Senate Democratic caucus weighed on stocks in the healthcare and banking sectors and served to underscore the political risk that has pushed U.S. stocks lower in recent weeks.

“Those two are very policy-sensitive sectors,” said Jeff Kleintop, chief market strategist at LPL Financial in Boston, “Once again, Washington (is) bearing down on the market.”

The healthcare sector also suffered after Pfizer Inc(PFE.N),, the world’s largest drug maker, released a below- par earnings report and gave a disappointing outlook. Pfizer, a Dow component, dropped fell 2.5 percent to $18.59.

The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI slipped 7.56 points, or 0.07 percent, to 10,289.29. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index .SPX fell 4.88 points, or 0.44 percent, to 1,098.44. The Nasdaq Composite Index .IXIC lost 2.22 points, or 0.10 percent, to 2,187.84.

Health insurers’ stocks dropped, with Cigna Corp (CI.N) down 1.5 percent at $34.72, and UnitedHealth Group Inc (UNH.N) off 2.3 percent at $33.28. The Morgan Stanley Healthcare Payor Index .HMO fell 1.4 percent.

A healthcare overhaul has stalled in the U.S. Congress after Democrats lost a Senate seat in Massachusetts, injecting uncertainty about the extent and strength of any reform.

Banking stocks also dropped as concern resurfaced about the administration’s intention to limit trading activities at some banks. Morgan Stanley (MS.N), which has a large trading arm, fell 0.7 percent to $27.89. The KBW bank index .BKX fell 2 percent.

Logistics companies’ shares weighed on the transport sector after Ryder System Inc (R.N) and C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc (CHRW.O) reported weaker-than-expected profits. [ID:nN03150751] and [ID:nSGE6110JK] Ryder tumbled 10 percent to $33.60, and C.H. Robinson lost 6 percent to $54.01.

The Dow Jones transportation average .DJT lost 1.5 percent.

The market’s mood, though, was directed by political developments, which overshadowed the broader economic picture.

The Institute for Supply Management said its services index rose to 50.5 in January from 49.8 in December, marking a return to growth, but below the 51.0 median forecast of economists surveyed by Reuters.

A report by ADP Employer Services showed the pace of U.S job losses in the private sector slowed in January, as employers reported the smallest payroll decline in nearly two years. [ID:nN03150829] (Reporting by Edward Krudy; Editing by Jan Paschal)

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