Stocks fell below record levels Wednesday, with investors weighing concerns over the economic impact of the ongoing pandemic against optimism over rebounding corporate earnings.
The S&P 500 ended lower a day after the index reached a record closing high. The Dow also fell, while the Nasdaq held in positive territory.
Investors considered a much weaker-than-expected report on private payroll growth last month. ADP reported that private-sector employers added back just 330,000 jobs in July, or fewer than half the expected gain of 690,000, according to Bloomberg consensus data.
The print, while typically an imprecise indicator of the Labor Department’s monthly non-farm payrolls reports, was nonetheless an indication of a labor market still struggling to recoup all of its pandemic-era losses. Friday’s “official” July jobs report is still expected to reflect a pick-up in hiring and the return of more workers to the labor market last…