US STOCKS-Wall Street drops as big banks fall after results

Reuters

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    * JPMorgan dips despite posting jump in profit
    * Citigroup, Wells Fargo among leading S&P 500 decliners
    * Retail sales fall again in December
    * Indexes down: Dow 0.44%, S&P 0.48%, Nasdaq 0.46%

 (Adds comment, details; updates prices)
    By Devik Jain and Medha Singh
    Jan 15 (Reuters) - Wall Street's main indexes dropped on
Friday, weighed down by losses in major U.S. lenders after their
earnings reports, while incoming President Joe Biden's $1.9
trillion stimulus plan also sparked fears of an increase in
corporate taxes.
    Shares of JPMorgan Chase & Co  JPM.N , Citigroup Inc  C.N 
and Wells Fargo & Co  WFC.N , which had seen a strong rally in
the run-up to earnings, were all down even as the banks posted
better-than-expected fourth-quarter profits.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL4N2JQ2PN
    JPMorgan fell 2.2% following a seven-day winning streak that
had pushed the stock about 12% higher.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL4N2JQ2WF urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL4N2JQ2V6
    The S&P 500 banks index  .SPXBK  shed 3.3%.
    Wall Street's main indexes are set to wrap up the week lower
after climbing to record highs recently on bets of a hefty
fiscal package and optimism about vaccine distribution.
    Also weighing on markets was a Washington Post report that
said COVID-19 vaccine reserve was already exhausted when the
Donald Trump administration vowed to release it this week,
dashing hopes of expanded access. (https://wapo.st/2MZoiwa)
    "It's a concern of the vaccine and maybe, to a lesser
extent, the Biden spending plan that he outlined last night,"
said Paul Nolte, portfolio manager at Kingsview Investment
Management in Chicago.
    "It's more of a healthy correction to some of the advances
that we've seen in the market."
    Biden's stimulus proposal, unveiled on Thursday, includes
some $1 trillion in direct relief to households and has sparked
fears that the government would need to hike corporate taxes to
fund the spending.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2JP30B  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2JQ02D
    "Biden's concern is not the stock market, his concern is
Main Street and that's a good thing ... but that tells you
there's going to be an increase in corporate taxes," said Dennis
Dick, proprietary trader at Bright Trading LLC in Las Vegas.
    Meanwhile, data showed a further decline in U.S. retail
sales in December - the latest sign the economy lost
considerable speed at the end of 2020.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2JP2H6
    Nine of the 11 major S&P sectors fell, with energy  .SPNY ,
financials  .SPSY  and industrials  .SPLRCI  posting the
steepest declines after leading markets higher in the recent
rally.
    The defensive utilities  .SPLRCU  and real estate  .SPLRCR 
were the only sectors trading higher.
    At 11:39 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average  .DJI 
fell 135.21 points, or 0.44%, to 30,856.31, the S&P 500  .SPX 
lost 18.40 points, or 0.48%, to 3,777.14 and the Nasdaq
Composite  .IXIC  lost 60.55 points, or 0.46%, to 13,052.08. 
    Earnings for S&P 500 companies are expected to decline 9.5%
in the final quarter of 2020 from a year ago, but are expected
to rebound in 2021, with a gain of 16.4% projected for the first
quarter, according to IBES data from Refinitiv. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2JO21D
    Exxon Mobil Corp  XOM.N  fell 3.6% after a report said the
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission launched an
investigation of the oil major, following a whistleblower's
complaint that the company overvalued a key asset in the
prolific Permian shale oil basin.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL4N2JQ2ZM
    Spotify Technology SA  SPOT.N  dropped about 5% after
Citigroup downgraded its shares to "sell".
    Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co  HPE.N  rose 1% after J.P.
Morgan upgraded the enterprise software maker's stock to
"overweight".
    Declining issues outnumbered advancers by a 2.8-to-1 ratio
on the NYSE and by a 2.9-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
    The S&P 500 posted 5 new 52-week highs and no new lows,
while the Nasdaq recorded 180 new highs and eight new lows.

 (Reporting by Devik Jain and Medha Singh in Bengaluru; Editing
by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and Maju Samuel)
 ((Devik.Jain@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 646 223 8780;
outside U.S. +91 80 6182 2062; ;))

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