The initial action was boosted by a potential cease fire between Russia and Ukraine, and the S&P traded as high as 2,009.28. But there was no follow-through and the S&P finished down 0.1% at 2,000.72.
But the big break from Tuesday's action was the character of risky sectors like tech and small caps, which suffered from aggressive profit taking.
Apple (AAPL) fell 4.2% to $98.94 on a cautious note from research firm Pacific Crest Securities, which recommended selling some shares ahead of next week's iPhone 6 launch. That helped drag down the NASDAQ Composite (COMP) by 0.6%.
Small caps also had a rough day, with the Russell 2000 (RUT) falling 0.6%. Housing was another sore spot. The iShares Dow Jones US Home Construction ETF (ITB) fell 2.1%.
On the flip side, utility stocks had a very strong day, getting a boost from a decline in US Treasury yields and an overall flight-to safety mood.
In US economics, July Factory Orders rose 10.5% on new aircraft demand, which was slightly below the 11.0% expected. However, last month's figure was revised up to 1.5% from 1.1%.
The Fed's Beige Book for September was released this afternoon. There was a slight increase in growth of two of 12 geographic regions, with the remaining 10 reporting no change.
The broader action felt like a much-needed breather from a blistering August and a solid first day of September that saw bullish action in the aforementioned techs and small caps. Historically, September has been the weakest month of the year for the market, so a pullback seems fitting.
Tomorrow's Financial Outlook
In the US, we will see new ADP Private Payrolls, Jobless Claims, and ISM Services numbers tomorrow.
However, all eyes will be on the European Central Bank's rate decision.
Based on recent interest rate movements in Europe, the market seems primed for a cut.
There is also some speculation that ECB President Mario Draghi will institute, or at least signal for the future, some type of quantitative easing program to help stimulate the Eurozone.
Needless to say, it should be an interesting day.
Follow the markets all day every day with a FREE 14 day trial to Buzz & Banter. Over 30 professional traders share their ideas in real-time. Learn more.
The information on this website solely reflects the analysis of or opinion about the performance of securities and financial markets by the writers whose articles appear on the site. The views expressed by the writers are not necessarily the views of Minyanville Media, Inc. or members of its management. Nothing contained on the website is intended to constitute a recommendation or advice addressed to an individual investor or category of investors to purchase, sell or hold any security, or to take any action with respect to the prospective movement of the securities markets or to solicit the purchase or sale of any security. Any investment decisions must be made by the reader either individually or in consultation with his or her investment professional. Minyanville writers and staff may trade or hold positions in securities that are discussed in articles appearing on the website. Writers of articles are required to disclose whether they have a position in any stock or fund discussed in an article, but are not permitted to disclose the size or direction of the position. Nothing on this website is intended to solicit business of any kind for a writer's business or fund. Minyanville management and staff as well as contributing writers will not respond to emails or other communications requesting investment advice.
Copyright 2011 Minyanville Media, Inc. All Rights Reserved.