U.S. stocks pulled back Wednesday, as investors took profits after major stock indices refreshed record highs repeatedly.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 101.47 points, or 0.61 percent, to 16,613.97. The broader S&P 500 shed 8.92 points, or 0. 47 percent, to 1,888.53. The Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 29.54 points, or 0.72 percent, to 4,100.63.
The market loss came after the Dow rewrote its record book for three sessions in a row and the S&P 500 scored a second consecutive record close.
The blue-chip Dow on Tuesday touched an all-time high of 16,735. 51 points in intra-day trading before finishing at a record close of 16,715.44 points. The S&P 500 crossed above the psychologically important level of 1,900 points for the first time Tuesday and also set record intra-day and closing highs.
Renewed selling on small-cap shares in the day which had been troubled by overvaluation concerns stopped Wall Street from extending its record run, as the Russell 2000 index, a gauge of market performance of smaller companies, slumped 1.6 percent.
Moreover, a surprising rise in U.S. wholesale prices also raised worries somewhat about increasing inflation pressure, which might prompt the U.S. Federal Reserve to hike interest rates earlier than expected.
Mulling the number, investors seemed more likely to stay on the sidelines, awaiting more inflation data such as Consumer Price Index due out the following day to assess the situation.
The U.S. producer price index for final demand advanced 0.6 percent in April on a seasonally adjusted basis, said the Labor Department Wednesday. The increase in wholesale prices was the biggest in more than a year, exceeding market expectations of a 0. 2-percent rise.
Among other data, U.S. mortgage applications climbed 3.6 percent from a week earlier, showed the Mortgage Bankers Association's weekly survey for the week ending May 9.
On corporate news, Macy's, Inc. reported before the opening bell earnings of 60 cents per diluted share for the first quarter of 2014 which beat market estimates by a penny and sales of 6.279 billion dollars trailing analyst expectations. The store department's shares were little changed, down 0.02 percent to 57. 83 U.S. dollars.
Shortly after the closing bell, Cisco Systems Inc. revealed that it earned 51 cents per shares excluding certain items in the third quarter of fiscal year 2014, surpassing market consensus of 48 cents, though its quarterly revenues dropped year on year. The network-equipment giant's shares climbed in after-hours trading.
The CBOE Volatility Index, a gauge of fear in the market, rose 0.33 percent to end at 12.17.
In other markets, oil prices gained as the situation in Ukraine deteriorated. Light, sweet crude for June delivery moved up 67 cents to 102.37 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for June delivery gained 95 cents to close at 110.19 dollars a barrel.
Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose as money fled from the decreasing equities to the precious metal, with the most active gold contract for June delivery rising 11.1 dollars, or 0.86 percent, to settle at 1,305. 9 dollars per ounce.
The U.S. dollar fell against most of other currencies though the European Central Bank was increasingly expected to introduce stimulus program to boost the economy.
In late New York trading, the euro moved up to 1.3708 dollars from 1.3699 dollars in the previous session. The dollar bought 101. 77 Japanese yen, lower than 102.29 yen of the previous session.