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Sell-Off In Semiconductor Stocks Hits Nasdaq In Another Volatile Session| Investor’s Business Daily

A wreck in semiconductor stocks sent the Nasdaq composite down nearly 1% at midday Friday, as the main indexes pared losses, but the rebound faded.




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The Nasdaq was down 0.9% after opening with a 1.2% loss. At one point this morning, the composite was nearly positive before it went back down.

Semiconductor Stocks Hit

The Philadelphia semiconductor index slid 2% as the chip industry led the market lower. Chip bellwethers Nvidia (NVDA) and Applied Materials (AMAT) fell after both companies gave weak sales guidance in their earnings reports late Thursday.

Nvidia plunged 17% to the lowest level since August 2017. The stock had already been sliding after a breakout from a late-stage base failed. Applied Materials lost 1% after trimming its loss. The stock remains in a downward trend that started in March.

Thursday’s strong reversal in the stock market offered hopes for a bottom. While Friday’s weakness hurts that goal, the indexes are trading well above Thursday’s lows.

The Dow Jones industrial average was up a fraction, and the small-cap Russell 2000 was off 0.7%. On the Dow, Verizon (VZ) led with a 1.7% increase to a new high. The stock is the only telecom in IBD Leaderboard.

The S&P 500 was down 0.2% thanks in part to a rebound in energy stocks. Drilling, exploration and production, and other oil industry groups were up 0.7% to 3.8%. The price of U.S. crude climbed more than 2% to $57.72 a barrel, aiming for a third straight gain. Crude, however, remains in a bear market.

Volume was tracking higher on the NYSE and lower on the Nasdaq compared with the same time Thursday. Declining stocks led advancers by nearly 9-to-5 on the Nasdaq and by 3-to-2 on the NYSE.

Health care was one sector with relative strength. But at least part of that rested on a rush to defensive stocks. Funeral, gold, utility, ethical drugs and medical supplies were in the top 20 of 197 industry groups today.

Retailers Weak Again

The retail sector also showed broad losses, after earnings reports left some key stocks damaged.

Williams-Sonoma (WSM) plunged 11% to a six-month low after it reported revenue and same-store sales below views. The furniture chain also gave a cautious outlook for its holiday quarter.

Nordstrom (JWN) plummeted 13% in heavy volume, crashing below its 50-day and 200-day moving averages this week. The retailer’s comparable sales and full-year sales guidance were below expectations late Thursday.

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