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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wall Street ended down slightly on Wednesday, with bank stocks declining as prospects of a U.S. interest rate cut rose and energy shares tumbling along with oil prices.
The S&P 500 energy index slid 1.4%, the most among the 11 S&P sectors, as demand worries drove U.S. crude prices down 4%. The day’s losses made energy the worst-performing S&P 500 sector for the year-to-date.
A report from the Labor Department showed U.S. consumer prices rose 0.1% in May, in line with expectations of economists polled by Reuters, pointing to moderate inflation. This backed the case for a rate cut by the Federal Reserve.
Banking stocks, which tend to benefit from higher interest rates, dropped 1.4%. The broader financial sector fell 1%.
Still, hopes that the Fed will act to counter a slowing global economy due to the escalating trade war with China have spurred a rally in stocks this month. The S&P 500 index is up 4.6% so far in June.
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