NEW YORK, New York – U.S. stocks fell Friday, the final trading day of a spectacular year for stock markets which saw all the major indices finishing 2021 near record highs.
‘Companies, consumers, and the broader economy largely thrived in 2021 as they felt their way forward amid a constantly shifting landscape including a tumultuous transfer of power marked by the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. Other factors included the “meme stock” phenomenon, new COVID-19 variants, a labor shortage, generous fiscal/monetary stimulus, hobbled supply chains, booming demand, and the resulting price spikes,’ Reuters news agency reported Friday.
“What stands out to us this year among all the negatives, is the resiliency of Corporate America,” Ryan Detrick, chief market strategist at LPL Financial in Charlotte, North Carolina told Reuters Friday. “In a sea of uncertainty and higher prices, you have to be extremely impressed by how agile and adaptive Corporate America was to sport 45% earnings growth in a very difficult year.”
The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 59.78 points, or 0.16%, to 36,338.30.
The Standard and Poor’s 500 dipped 12.55 points, or 0.26%, to 4,766.18.
The Nasdaq Composite shed 96.59 points, or 0.61%, to 15,644.97.
The U.S. dollar lost ground across the board. The euro strengthened to 1.1376 by the New York close Friday. The Japanese yen firmed to 115.09. The British pound was sharply higher at 1.3523. The Swiss franc gained to 0.9123.
The Canadian dollar was higher at 1.2645. The Australian dollar advanced to 0.7266. The New Zealand dollar was in demand at 0.6841.
On overseas markets, the FTSE 100 in London slipped 0.25 percent. The Paris-based CAC 40 dropped 0.28 percent. The German Dax went against the trend, rising 0.21 percent.
On Asian markets, the Australian All Ordinaries index lost 64.50 points or 0.82 percent to close Friday at 7,779.20.
In Japan, the Nikkei 225 declined 115.17 points or 0.40 percent to 28,791.71.
The Hong Kong Hang Seng climbed 285.66 points or 1.24 percent to 23,397.67.
China’s Shanghai Composite closed 20.59 points or 0.57 percent higher at 3,639.78.