NEW YORK -- A seven-day surge in technology stocks ended Tuesday after President Donald Trump blocked Singapore-based chipmaker Broadcom's effort to buy Qualcomm. Trump said he opposed the $117 billion deal because it could have been detrimental to national security.
The Dow Jones industrial average climbed as much as 197 points in early trading after investors were pleased with a Labor Department report that showed inflation remained in check last month. But the gains soon faded.
Technology stocks were at record highs after a recent rally. While Qualcomm had rejected all of Broadcom's offers, investors are now wondering if other deals might also be blocked or if companies will hesitate before making bids for overseas competitors.
"I don't think we've started to price in protectionism on a broader level," said Gina Martin Adams, chief equity strategist for Bloomberg Intelligence.
The S&P 500 index lost 17.71 points, or 0.6 percent, to 2,765.31. The Dow Jones industrial average slid 171.58 points, or 0.7 percent, to 25,007.03. The Nasdaq composite fell 77.31 points, or 1 percent, to 7,511.01, its first decline after seven straight gains. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks sank 9 points, or 0.6 percent, to 1,592.05.
Qualcomm is one of the biggest makers of processors that power smartphones and other mobile devices. The deal would have been the largest in the history of the technology industry and Broadcom's offer came as other countries are also getting ready to build faster "5G" wireless networks.
Qualcomm slid $3.11, or 5 percent, to $59.70. Broadcom rose more than 3 percent early on but finished with a loss of $1.62 to $261.22. Intel, a competitor, added 26 cents to $51.78. The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that Intel wanted to stop the deal and might try to buy Broadcom to make that happen.
Trump also cited national-security risks this month in announcing tariffs on imported aluminum and steel, and investors appeared to be wondering if at least one other deal will face new obstacles. In November Bermuda-based chipmaker Marvell Technology Group agreed to buy competitor Cavium for $6 billion. Cavium lost $4, or 4.4 percent, to $86.95 while Marvell lost $1.43, or 5.9 percent, to $22.94.
The U.S. government has blocked deals by Chinese companies in the past few years under both Barack Obama and Trump, but Adams, of Bloomberg Intelligence, said investors are more focused on the issue now.
The government said prices paid by consumers rose 0.2 percent in February, matching estimates. Excluding food and energy costs, prices have risen 1.8 percent in the past year. Prices had jumped in January. Over the past month investors have worried about the prospect of faster inflation, but Tuesday's price report and the monthly jobs report on Friday suggest inflation isn't moving any more rapidly than it did in the recent past.
With investors expecting slower gains in rates, bond yields headed lower. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note slipped to 2.85 percent from 2.87 percent. Faster inflation likely would result in the Fed raising interest rates more quickly. Investors feared that could significantly slow the economy and the market's gains.
Benchmark U.S. crude slumped 65 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $60.71 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, lost 31 cents to $64.64 per barrel in London.
Business on 03/14/2018
Print Headline: Deal blocked, tech surge fizzles