Stocks End Mixed, Nasdaq Sinks as Higher Yields Weigh on Tech

Stocks finished mixed on Monday. A selloff in bonds indicates investors expect stronger economic growth but also a pickup in inflation.
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Stocks finished mixed Monday as a selloff in bonds indicated investors expected stronger economic growth but also a pickup in inflation.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 27 points, or 0.09%, to 31,521, while the S&P 500 declined 0.77%.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq ended down 2.46%. Technology shares were the leading laggards as the high-growth stocks can be more vulnerable to inflation pressures.

Apple  (AAPL) - Get Report ended down 3%, while Amazon  (AMZN) - Get Report declined 2.1%.

Copper -- often viewed as a reliable gauge for near-term growth -- traded above $9,000 a ton to a 9 1/2-year high, while oil prices tested 13-month highs near $63 a barrel. 

Boeing  (BA) - Get Report finished down 2.1% after the company's 777 jets were grounded by certain airlines in the U.S. and Asia following an engine failure that showered debris over a Denver suburb.

Boeing said it "recommended suspending operations of the 69 in-service and 59 in-storage 777s powered by Pratt & Whitney 4000-112 engines" until the Federal Aviation Administration "identifies the appropriate inspection protocol."

The 10-year Treasury yield was at 1.367% and had risen as high as 1.394% in action Monday.

Bond prices, which move lower when yields rise, have been falling on fears that improved vaccine rollouts and more fiscal stimulus will lead to higher inflation and that rising borrowing costs could lead to a stock market pullback. 

The U.S. House of Representatives likely will vote on President Joe Biden’s proposed $1.9 trillion stimulus package by the end of the week. 

The bill includes $1,400 checks to most Americans, a hike in the minimum wage to $15 an hour, and a boost in supplemental unemployment benefits to $400 a week from $300.

On the virus front, deaths in the U.S. from COVID-19 approached 500,000. But there was some good news: Data from Israel showed that the Pfizer  (PFE) - Get Report and BioNTech  (BNTX) - Get Report COVID-19 vaccine was 89.4% effective at preventing laboratory-confirmed infections. Some scientists disputed its accuracy.