Dow Inches Down for 3rd Straight Day

Stocks ticked lower Wednesday as investors looked ahead to a key inflation report due later this week.

The Dow Jones Industrials remained negative 81.09 points at noon EST Wednesday at 38,891.32, marking its third consecutive day of losses.

The S&P 500 dropped 9.33 points to 5,068.85.

The NASDAQ index slid 64.59 points to 15,970.71.

UnitedHealth lost more than 4% to lead the Dow lower. Intel and Alphabet declined 1.3% and 2%, respectively. Elsewhere, Urban Outfitters fell nearly 15% after reporting weaker-than-expected results for the fourth quarter.

Investors are looking toward the personal consumption expenditure reading for January on Thursday, which is the Federal Reserve’s preferred measure of inflation.

The report will come as the market tries to build on the gains that took the Dow and S&P 500 to record highs. This week, the market has struggled, however, pulling back slightly.

Prices for the 10-year Treasury inched forward, lowering yields to 4.29% from Tuesday’s 4.31%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices faded six cents to $78.80 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices dropped 60 cents to $2,043.50.