New York Report: Dow and S&P ease off highs

US STOCKS dipped in thin volume yesterday, with the Dow and the S&P 500 retreating from Monday’s record closing levels as traders found few reasons to buy following a string of gains.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 21.29 points or 0.13 per cent, to end at 16,722.34. The S&P 500 inched down just 0.73 of a point or 0.04 per cent, to 1,924.24. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 3.12 points or 0.07 per cent, to 4,234.08.

The CBOE Volatility Index rose for a second straight day, up 2.5 per cent, though it remained under 12, well below the historical average of 20. While the level of the Vix indicates a lack of fear in the market, some investors are concerned that it also reflects a sense of complacency.

Trading volume was light at around 5.1bn shares on US exchanges, below last month’s average of 5.75bn.