The Associated Press
Major U.S. stock indexes ended mostly lower Monday amid signs that the Trump administration is laying the groundwork to ratchet up scrutiny on some of the market's biggest names: Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Google.
Google's parent Alphabet lost 6.1% and Facebook sank 7.5%, pulling down communications sector stocks. Technology companies also took heavy losses, with Apple shedding 1% on the day that the iPhone seller kicked off its annual software showcase. Amazon, meanwhile, fell 4.6% as it led a slide in consumer discretionary stocks.
Investors were reacting to media reports suggesting that government regulators are setting the stage for potential antitrust probes into each of the four technology giants.
The sell-off knocked the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite index into a correction, Wall Street speak for a drop of 10% or more from a peak. The Nasdaq hit its most recent all-time high early last month, before the trade dispute between the U.S. and China escalated, setting off a monthlong slide.
"We do have this trade uncertainty, and we now have some uncertainty with tech companies and government regulations," said Karyn Cavanaugh, senior markets strategist at Voya Investment Management. "These are the go-to big names, and if they're vulnerable, that just makes investors a little bit nervous."
The S&P 500 index fell 7.61 points, or 0.3%, to 2,744.45. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 4.74 points, or less than 0.1%, to 24,819.78. The Nasdaq composite lost 120.13 points, or 1.6%, to 7,333.02. It's now down 10.2% from its all-time high set May 3. The Russell 2000 index of small companies rose 4.50 points, or 0.3%, to 1,469.98.
Major stock indexes in Europe closed broadly higher.
U.S. stock indexes briefly headed higher, with technology companies among the big gainers, in what appeared to be a budding rebound for the market after it closed out May with its first monthly decline this year.
But the slight gains evaporated as investors weighed the implications of a possible wave of heightened scrutiny on the market's biggest technology companies.
Alphabet tumbled as media reports suggested it faces an antitrust investigation by the Justice Department.