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US: Stocks end mostly lower despite banking share rally

[NEW YORK] Wall Street stocks finished mostly lower Monday, with petroleum-linked shares sliding on tumbling oil prices, although banking shares enjoyed large gains following solid earnings.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 0.2 per cent at 25,064.36.

The broad-based S&P 500 declined 0.1 per cent to 2,798.43, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index fell 0.3 per cent to 7,805.72.

Investors are girding for a heavy week of corporate earnings and economic news, including two days of testimony from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell beginning Tuesday.

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Most of the biggest events take place later in the week, with earnings reports from Goldman Sachs and others and several key housing industry data releases.

US retail sales rose 0.5 per cent in June compared with May, matching analyst expectations.

Banking shares were buoyed after Bank of America became the latest company in the sector to report better-than-expected second quarter earnings behind lending growth and lower taxes.

Bank of America jumped 4.3 per cent, while JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup both climbed close to four per cent. Both JPMorgan and Citigroup had fallen on Friday after reporting solid earnings increases over the year-ago results.

But petroleum-linked companies tumbled on a big drop in oil prices. Exxon Mobil and Chevron both fell about one per cent, while Apache shed 3.1 per cent.

AFP