NEW YORK — A mix of downbeat corporate and economic news pulled the stock market lower today as health-care companies and housing stocks fell. Johnson & Johnson sank after reporting that a stronger dollar pinched the company’s quarterly results.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell eight points, 0.4 percent, to 2,011 as of noon. The Dow Jones industrial average sank 109 points, or 0.6 percent, to 17,402, while the Nasdaq lost 16 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,619.
Johnson & Johnson, the maker of Tylenol, prescription drugs, and joint replacements, turned in earnings that beat analysts’ forecasts, yet it came up short for revenue, largely a result of a stronger dollar. Sales of medical devices, baby shampoo and other products sank as transactions in foreign currencies translated into fewer dollars. The company’s stock fell $3.17, or 3 percent, to $100.90, the steepest drop of any company in the Dow.
A weak signal from the housing market sent builders’ stocks down. U.S. homebuilders reported feeling slightly less confident in their sales prospects, with the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index slipping a point from the prior month.
Delta Air Lines surged 4 percent after the airline reported quarterly results that topped analysts’ estimates. Falling oil prices helped, as the airline spent much less on fuel compared with the same period of 2013. Its stock surged $2.03 to $47.91.
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