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US STOCKS-Wall St slips as Trump tweet pummels drug stocks

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* Trump says to bring down pricing; drug stocks drop * Rate hike odds for March stand at 83 pct * Healthcare sector set for worst day since Jan. 11 * Indexes down: Dow 0.14 pct, S&P 0.20 pct, Nasdaq 0.13 pct (Updates to open) By Yashaswini Swamynathan March 7 (Reuters) – Healthcare stocks took a hammering onTuesday, dragging the major U.S. indexes lower, after PresidentDonald Trump tweeted about lowering drug prices. Trump said he was working on a new system to increasecompetition in the drugs industry and bring down prices. The S&P 500 healthcare index plunged 0.91 percent,setting it up for its worst day since Jan. 11, when Trump saiddrugmakers were “getting away with murder” by charging highprices. Johnson & Johnson was the top drag on the S&P 500and the Dow Jones Industrial Average, while Amgen had a similarinfluence on the Nasdaq. The healthcare selloff could lead to the first back-to-backlosses for the S&P 500 and the Dow in more than one month. Nine of the other 11 major S&P sectors marked slight lossesas investors position themselves for an interest rate hike nextweek. The Federal Reserve has left no stone unturned in preparingthe markets for tighter monetary policy, with an unusual numberof key officials including Fed Chair Janet Yellen hinting at arate hike in the central bank’s March 14-15 meeting. The chances for a rate hike this month are at 83 percent, upfrom roughly 30 percent at the start of last week, according toThomson Reuters data. At 9:35 a.m. ET (1435 GMT), the Dow was down 28.62points, or 0.14 percent, at 20,925.72, the S&P 500 wasdown 4.79 points, or 0.20 percent, at 2,370.52 and the NasdaqComposite was down 7.35 points, or 0.13 percent, at5,841.82. Newly minted shares of Snapchat owner Snap Inc fell8.5 percent to $21.70 after a group representing largeinstitutional investors asked stock index providers to bar thecompany and others who sell non-voting shares from their stockbenchmarks. Nimble Storage soared 45 percent after HewlettPackard Co said it would buy the data storage providerfor $1.09 billion in cash. HPE’s stock was marginally lower. Dish Network was up 4.4 percent at $63.98 after thesatellite TV company was picked to join the S&P 500. Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 1,683to 835. On the Nasdaq, 1,257 issues fell and 892 advanced. The S&P 500 index showed five new 52-week highs and threenew lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 11 new highs and 16 newlows. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing bySaumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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