Stocks opened sharply lower Wednesday, on track to cap a brutal first half for equities that has the S&P 500 on pace for its worst such start since at least 1970. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DOW:DJIA) fell 352 points, or 1.1%, while the S&P 500 (S&P:SPX) dropped 1.1% and the Nasdaq Composite (NASDAQ:COMP) shed 1.2%. Data on Thursday showed a key gauge of U.S. inflation rose 0.6% in May largely due to the higher cost of gas and food, though there were signs that price pressures were starting to ease. The rise in the so-called personal-consumption price index was triple the 0.2% gain in April. But a narrower measure of inflation that omits volatile food and energy costs, known as the core PCE, rose by a relatively modest 0.3% for the fourth month in a row - below Wall Street's 0.4% forecast.
June 30, 2022, 9:32 a.m. EDT