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US: Wall Street ends lower on China growth worries


[NEW YORK] Chinese economic worries and fears about global growth ate further into US equities on Friday, pushing the Dow lower for the first time in five days.

Meanwhile, crude oil closed lower for the tenth straight session in New York and US inflation data surprised investors, eroding gains from Wednesday's relief rally.

The benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.8 per cent, closing the week at 25,989.30. Despite finishing lower for the day, the Dow still had its best week since June, adding 2.8 per cent.

The broader S&P 500 sank 0.9 per cent, to finish at 2,781.01, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq recorded the steepest losses, falling 1.7 per cent to 7,406.90.

US wholesale inflation figures released showed producer prices rose faster than expected in October, perhaps strengthening the case for the Federal Reserve to persist in raising interest rates.

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Meanwhile, Chinese wholesale inflation, also released Friday, underwhelmed, possibly pointing to weakening demand.

Gregori Volokhine of Meeschaert Financial Services told AFP there were "clear signs" of slowing in the Chinese economy, amid the tariff battle of between Washington and Beijing.

"But, while a trade war can be resolved through negotiation, an economic slowdown is a much more serious problem," he said.

"Slowing growth in China represents a risk for everyone."

Chinese auto sales also fell, he said.

Investors' hopes for an amicable resolution to the US-China trade war also dimmed Friday as senior White House economic aide Peter Navarro gave a hardline speech in Washington, outlining all the ways China has been taking advantage of the United States and telling companies like Goldman Sachs to stay out of the discussions.

"If and when there is a deal, it will be on President Donald J Trump's terms, not Wall Street's terms," he said.

Benchmark WTI crude closed down 48 cents, marking its longest stretch of losses since the 1980s.

Despite the falling oil prices, supermajors Exxon Mobil and Chevron were little changed on the day, closing flat and up 0.1 per cent respectively.

Construction equipment maker Caterpillar sank 3.4 per cent, and investment bank Goldman Sachs, embroiled in a Malaysian corruption case lost 3.9 per cent.

Tech shares, a beneficiary of recent rallies, were likewise lower.

Karl Haeling of LBBW told AFP the dip in technology shares was typical.

"They lead when there is a rally and they lead when there is a sell-off," he said.


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