- US stocks declined slightly on Wednesday as investors weighed the latest developments in reaching a stimulus agreement.
- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin failed to reach a deal before a Tuesday deadline and now aim to finalize a proposal before the weekend.
- Senate Democrats blocked Republicans’ $500 billion “skinny bill,” leaving both parties stuck in a stimulus deadlock.
- Oil futures sank on reports that US crude inventories climbed by 1.9 million barrels last week. West Texas Intermediate crude sank as much as 4.6%, to $39.78 per barrel.
- Watch major indexes update live here.
US equities finished slightly lower on Wednesday as investors waited for updates on stimulus-deal progress.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin continue to iron out differences on a massive round of fiscal support ahead of a new Friday deadline. Stocks whipsawed through the final hour of trading as investors weighed whether Pelosi’s optimistic outlook for a bill would come to fruition.
The White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows, told CNBC on Tuesday that the administration and Democrats had recently made “good progress” but “still have a ways to go” before finalizing a deal. Odds of a pre-election breakthrough “continue to look very low,” Goldman Sachs told clients in a note.
Here’s where US indexes stood at the 4 p.m. ET market close on Wednesday:
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“Negotiations are likely to continue, because neither side benefits from ending them,” the bank’s strategists added.
Disagreements over a relief bill are still significant. The White House recently offered a $1.9 trillion measure, coming in well below Democrats’ $2.2 trillion package. The “thorniest issues” – aid for states and liability protections – also present sizable roadblocks, Goldman said in its note.
But Senate Republicans have balked at a trillion-dollar price tag and aren’t likely to bring either to a vote. Democrats blocked Republicans’ $500 billion proposal in the Senate Wednesday afternoon, leaving both parties trapped in stimulus limbo.
Wednesday’s tepid session followed a mild upswing in Tuesday trading after Pelosi’s encouraging remarks. Investors largely shrugged off the government’s antitrust lawsuit against Google and stayed hopes for a near-term stimulus breakthrough.
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Netflix dragged on indexes after its third-quarter report missed Wall Street expectations. Quarterly subscriber additions of 2.2 million fell below the 3.3 million estimate, and profit was similarly disappointing.
Snap surged after beating expectations for third-quarter profits and revenue. Daily active users climbed by 11 million to 249…