Stock Market Opens Lower As Whole Foods And Amazon Announce Merger

By Mark DeCambre Markets MarketWatch Pulse

U.S. stocks opened little changed on Friday, as Wall Street tried to cap a week marked by nagging pain in the technology sector and a Federal Reserve interest-rate hike. Trading action also comes as Amazon.com Inc. said it would purchase grocery chain Whole Foods Market Inc. for $13.7 billion or $42 a share. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 16 points, or less than 0.1%, at 21,349, the S&P 500 index was flat at 2,431, with consumer-staples sinking led by a 15% decline in shares of Kroger Co. , extending that grocery chains slide from the previous session. The Nasdaq Composite Index , meanwhile, was off 0.3% at 6,146 and set to end the week down nearly 1%, marking its second straight weekly decline in a row, as shares of high-flying companies like Amazon, Netflix Inc. . Facebook Inc. , Google-parent Alphabet Inc. retreated sharply from at or near record prices.

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