* Macy's falls on margin concerns, takes down retail
* Walmart off as Amazon courts its customer base
* Dow down 0.23 pct, S&P 500 down 0.28 pct, Nasdaq off 0.33
(Updates to market close)
By Rodrigo Campos
NEW YORK, June 6 Major U.S. stock indexes ended
near session lows on Tuesday as traders shied away from risky
assets ahead of major political and economic headlines expected
Britain's general election as it maps its exit from the
European Union, the European Central Bank's policy meeting and
former FBI Director James Comey's testimony before a Senate
panel could all affect investor sentiment.
Comey was investigating whether Donald Trump's presidential
campaign and Russia colluded to sway the 2016 U.S. election when
he was fired by Trump in May. His testimony could dampen already
flagging momentum for the U.S. President's agenda of rolling
back regulations and overhauling the tax code.
British Prime Minister Theresa May could increase her
parliamentary majority, an opinion poll showed on Tuesday,
shortly after another survey suggested the race with the
opposition Labour Party was neck-and-neck.
Investors will also watch out for the European Central
Bank's meeting, where policymakers are expected to take a more
benign view of the economy, according to sources.
“We have a lot of stuff on Thursday. If you’re looking for
days where we can see some long-awaited volatility, I'd say
that's probably going to be Thursday and Friday," said Anthony
Conroy, president at brokerage Abel Noser in New York.
"You got to position yourself to whatever could happen
Thursday so you take a little bit off the table."
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 47.81 points,
or 0.23 percent, to 21,136.23, the S&P 500 lost 6.77
points, or 0.28 percent, to 2,429.33 and the Nasdaq Composite
dropped 20.63 points, or 0.33 percent, to 6,275.06.
Safe-havens were bid up as traders sold out of stocks. Spot
gold rose 1.1 percent to $1,293.47 after earlier touching
its highest since November, while U.S. 10-year Treasury yields
touched a session low of 2.129 percent, their lowest
level since the days following the November U.S. Presidential
The largest weight on the S&P 500 was Amazon, down
0.8 percent. Walmart fell 1.7 percent to $78.93 after
Amazon said it would offer its Prime subscription service at a
discount to U.S. customers on government aid, taking aim at a
piece of Walmart's customer base.
Macy's dropped 8.2 percent to $21.90 after it warned
its margins could shrink further.
The news hit other department stores: J.C. Penney
dropped 4.1 percent, Sears fell 2.5 percent and
Nordstrom slid 3.6 percent.
Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a
1.19-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.62-to-1 ratio favored decliners.
The S&P 500 posted 28 new 52-week highs and 11 new lows; the
Nasdaq Composite recorded 82 new highs and 70 new lows.
About 6.42 billion shares changed hands in U.S. exchanges,
compared with the 6.6 billion daily average over the last 20
(Reporting by Rodrigo Campos; Editing by Nick Zieminski)