US stocks edge lower ahead of company earnings updates

NEW YORK — (AP) — Stocks edged lower in uncertain trading on Wall Street Tuesday ahead of key updates this week on inflation and company earnings.

The S&P 500 fell 0.2% as of 10:36 a.m. Eastern. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 60 points, or 0.2%, to 33,450. The Nasdaq fell 0.2%.

Technology fell and health care stocks made solid gains.

Wall Street remains focused on inflation and its grip on the economy as the Federal Reserve stays aggressive in its fight against stubbornly high prices on food, clothing and other necessities. That has left investors closely watching economic data and updates from companies.

The next big marker for the market will be Thursday’s report on inflation at the consumer level. Economists expect it to show inflation slowed further to 6.5% last month from 7.1% in November.

Investors are also anticipating the latest round of corporate earnings. Updates from retailers have reinforced concerns about weaker sales amid hot inflation squeezing wallets. Macy’s and several others have warned investors about weaker results during the fourth quarter and into 2023.

Technology sector job cuts continued with the latest from crypto exchange Coinbase announcing it is laying off 20% of its workforce. The stock rose 3%.

Several big banks are on deck to report their results on Friday, including Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase. Delta Air Lines and UnitedHealth Group will also report results on Friday. Analysts are forecasting that this may mark the first year-over-year drop in earnings per share for S&P 500 companies since 2020.

Bond yields rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury, which influences mortgage rates, climbed to 3.60% from 3.53%.

European markets were lower and Asian markets closed mixed overnight. Crude oil prices rose.