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US stocks retreat amid mixed readings on manufacturing, services

US equities opened slightly lower on Thursday, pulling back a bit after the Dow Jones Industrial Average breached 22,000 for the first time on Wednesday.

The S&P 500 was down 0.2 per cent at 2,472 while the Dow Jones fell 0.1 per cent to 21,996 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite slid 0.2 per cent to 6,348.

The dollar was also recovering after pressure on Wednesday, The DXY dollar index, which measure the buck against a basket of its peers, was largely unchanged at 92.84.

The yield on 10-year Treasury note, which moves inversely to price, was down 2.8 basis points to 2.242 per cent.

The moves come as investors digest the latest US reports on factory orders and durable goods, as well as economic activity in the non-manufacturing sector.

US factory orders roared back to life in June following two months of declines. New orders for manufactured goods jumped 3 per cent, its biggest gain in eight months, according to data from the US Commerce Department.

Growth in durable goods orders – which are seen as a proxy for business investment – also held steady, rising 6.4 per cent in June compared to the 6.5 per cent pace logged in May.

The relatively robust snapshots of the US manufacturing sector were tempered however by a separate report showing that the rate of expansion in the vast US services sector slowed to its weakest level in 11 months.

The Institute for Supply Management’s non-manufacturing gauge clocked in at 53.9 in July. While the figure is above the 50 line that separates expansion from contraction, it came in well short of Wall Street expectations of 56.9 and below the 57.4 reading logged in June.

Looking ahead, Kraft Heinz, Viacom, Shake Shake and Yelp will be releasing quarterly results after the market close.