Stocks were mixed at Monday as healthcare sector losses weighed on markets, but a rally in tech offered a boost to the Nasdaq. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was lower after component Merck tumbled on drug approval troubles. The S&P 500 Index was also slightly lower. The tech-heavy Nasdaq pushed higher as much as 0.2% to earn a new intraday record.
Merck (MRK) was the biggest loser on the Dow Monday after it withdrew an application for approval of an additional indication of its Keytruda drug in Europe. Merck released a statement saying it had scrapped its application for approval in Europe, but offered no reasoning. One of Merck's wonder drugs, Keytruda treats metastatic nonsquamous non-small cell lung cancer. Merck's losses weighed on the entire healthcare sector.
Both Washington and Wall Street were left a bit uneasy Monday after the first shoe dropped in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his associate Rick Gates were reportedly ordered to surrender to federal authorities early Monday. Charges against Manafort and Gates included conspiracy against the United States, money laundering and making false statements.
Shares of General Motors Co. (GM) were lower Monday after Goldman Sachs analysts downgraded the stock to sell. Goldman said GM's earnings are on track to shrink over the coming years as the Detroit automaker struggles to keep up with troubling cyclical and one-off headwinds.