Tech stocks, once highfliers, drop; traders turn on sinking Nasdaq

Traders dump technology stocks, leading to a broad market decline; Nasdaq sinks 2.6 percent

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NEW YORK — A slump in Internet and other technology stocks pulled the broader market lower Friday, as traders turned on the same companies they flocked to earlier this year. Google, Netflix and other pillars of the Internet economy took a beating.

It was a bad day in an otherwise decent week.

Mixed signals in the government’s monthly jobs report gave investors little direction Friday. The government said that U.S. employers added more workers to their payrolls last month, but the overall report presented a mixed picture, and the unemployment rate remained at 6.7 percent.

Tech stocks had soared over the past year, pushing the Nasdaq composite index up 28 percent, as traders piled into Internet and biotechnology companies.

The technology-heavy Nasdaq composite index plunged 110.01 points, or 2.6 percent, to close at 4,127.73, its biggest one-day drop since February.

The S&P 500 index fell 23.68 points, or 1.3 percent, to 1,865.09. The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 159.84 points, or 1 percent, to 16,412.71.

Utilities, which investors buy to play it safe and collect dividend payments, bucked the overall market and edged higher. Coca-Cola, Johnson & Johnson and other big corporations whose stocks are often less volatile than the broader market also made gains. Coca-Cola climbed 15 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $38.22.

In the bond market Friday, traders pushed Treasury prices up and yields down. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.73 percent from 2.80 percent late Thursday. The price of crude oil rose 85 cents to settle at $101.14 a barrel. Gold gained $18.90 to close at $1,303.50 an ounce, its biggest gain in three weeks.

Netflix, Inc. - Johnson & Johnson - Meda AB


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