Geopolitical fears weigh on Wall Street - New York Report

THE S&P 500 ended nearly flat yesterday as concerns about global weakness and political turmoil were offset by gains in technology and energy shares.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 51.28 points, or 0.29 per cent, to 17,801.2, the S&P 500 lost 0.49 points, or 0.02 per cent, to 2,059.82. However, the Nasdaq Composite added 25.77 points, or 0.54 per cent, to 4,766.47.

Energy and technology shares boosted the market and the Nasdaq ended the day higher.

Apple shares climbed 1.5 per cent to $114.12, giving the Nasdaq and S&P 500 their biggest boost. Small-cap stocks also bounced, with the Russell 2000 index gaining 1.8 per cent.

Greece unnerved investors after the government brought a presidential vote forward in a political gamble that raised uncertainty over the country’s transition out of its bailout.

Brent crude rebounded to settle up one per cent after hitting a fresh five-year low of $65.29.

Oil prices have been under pressure as the dollar strengthened and the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries decided against an output cut, with Brent down more than 40 per cent from its June high.

US telecom stocks led losses on the S&P 500 and Dow on concerns about an industry price war. Verizon Communications warned that promotions in its wireless business would bite into its fourth-quarter profit. Its shares fell four per cent to $46.92.