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US: Oil shares, Apple lead stocks lower


[NEW YORK] Petroleum-linked shares retreated Friday on lower oil prices and Apple fell on a report of sluggish iPhone sales as US stocks finished a solid week on a down note.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 28.97 points (0.16 per cent) to 17,897.46.

The broad-based S&P 500 dropped 2.05 (0.10 per cent) to 2,080.73, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index shed 7.67 (0.16 per cent) at 4,938.22.

Petroleum producers ConocoPhillips and Apache shed 1.2 per cent and 1.7 per cent, respectively, as oil prices tumbled on expectations that this weekend's key producers meeting will not do much to address a global supply glut.

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Apple sank 2.0 per cent following a report in Nikkei Asian Review that the tech giant was curtailing iPhone production in the April-June quarter due to weak sales.

Analysts said the market was also primed to give back some gains from earlier in the week.

Citigroup finished down 0.1 per cent as it reported a 26.6 per cent drop in first-quarter profits to US$3.5 billion in results that bested expectations. The giant bank increased its reserves for bad energy loans by US$233 million.

Other large banks also fell, giving back some of their gains from earlier in the week. Dow member JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America and Wells Fargo all lost about 1.2 per cent.

Yahoo fell 1.8 per cent following a report in The New York Times that it has declined to share important financial details with potential suitors.

Big-box chain Costco Wholesale rose 1.2 per cent as it lifted its quarterly dividend by five cents to 45 cents per share.