The major indexes had a mixed day of trading on Wall Street on Thursday, as stocks gave back some of their recent gains.

The S&P 500 finished 0.1% down after fluctuating between little gains and losses. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 0.3%, while the Nasdaq increased 0.4%.

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Energy companies, which had been the largest gainers in the benchmark S&P 500 this year, were the greatest drag on the market as the price of US crude oil went below $90 per barrel for the first time since early February, prior to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Gains in technology companies, retailers, and other sectors helped to offset losses in energy, health care, and other sectors.

The muted trading came as investors continued to review the latest updates on the economy and corporate earnings ahead of the government’s monthly snapshot of the nation’s job market Friday.

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Investors are eyeing jobs data to gauge whether any tightening in the labour market might prompt the Federal Reserve to eventually ease up on its interest rate hikes as it fights inflation, potentially lessening the chance of the central bank bringing on a recession.

The S&P 500 slipped 3.23 points to 4,151.94, and the Dow dropped 85.68 points to 32,726.82. The Nasdaq rose 52.42 points to 12,720.58. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gave up 2.47 points, or 0.1%, to close at 1,906.46.

All of the major indexes except for the Dow are on pace for weekly gains after rallying Wednesday.

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The price of U.S crude oil fell 2.3% to settle at $88.54 per barrel Thursday, weighing on energy company stocks. Exxon Mobil slid 4.2% and Occidental Petroleum fell 5.8%.

Health care stocks also lost ground. Eli Lilly dropped 2.6%.

Tech stocks and a mix of retailers, homebuilders and industrial companies made solid gains. Advanced Micro Devices climbed 5.9%, Amazon added 2.2%, Lennar rose 3.4% and Deere gained 1.7%.

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Stocks have meandered this week, leaving major indexes mostly higher. August’s gain follows a standout July that was the S&P 500′s best month since late 2020. But markets remain volatile as investors try to determine the economy’s path ahead amid the highest inflation in four decades and efforts from central banks to fight higher prices.

Earnings remain in focus on Wall Street as investors look for more clues on how inflation is impacting various industries. Twinkie maker Hostess fell 3.9% after giving investors a disappointing profit forecast for the year. Bleach and consumer products maker Clorox fell 4.7% after also announcing a weak earnings forecast.

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Companies have been raising prices on everything from food to clothing to help offset the impact of inflation on supply chains, but the pressure has become too much for many consumers. A surge in gasoline prices throughout the year worsened inflation and prompted spending cutbacks.

The Federal Reserve has been aggressively raising interest rates to try and slow the economy and fight inflation, along with other central banks. The Bank of England on Thursday initiated its biggest rate hike in more than a quarter century.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.66% from 2.74% late Wednesday.

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A bright point in the broader economy has been a strong employment market. New data from the Labor Department on Thursday showed the number of Americans applying for jobless benefits last week rose in line with expectations, as the number of unemployed continues to rise modestly.

The latest data follows updates earlier this week showing that job openings eased, but still remain at record highs. The Labor Department’s July jobs report on Friday is expected to show some signs of tightening.