US stocks mostly fall as drop in oil hits energy companies; Priceline slumps on outlook

NEW YORK, N.Y. – Stocks are closing mostly lower, led by declines in energy companies as the price of oil continues to fall.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell five points, or 0.3 per cent, to 2,012 Tuesday.

The Nasdaq composite fell 15 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 4,623. The Dow Jones industrial average bucked the trend, rising 17 points, or 0.1 per cent, to 17,383.

Energy stocks fell 2 per cent, the most of the 10 industries in the S&P 500 index. Oilfield services companies were especially hard hit. Halliburton slumped 5 per cent.

Priceline dropped 8 per cent after the company said the weak economic backdrop in Europe would hurt its earnings.

U.S. crude oil fell $1.59, or 2 per cent, to $77.19 a barrel in New York, the lowest price in three years.