US STOCKS-Volatile energy shares lead Wall St lower after ECB

jueves 4 de diciembre de 2014 12:54 GYT

* Weekly jobless claims land almost as expected

* Stocks slide after ECB's Draghi speaks

* Indexes down: Dow 0.5, S&P 500 0.5 pct, Nasdaq 0.3 (Updates prices)

By Rodrigo Campos

NEW YORK, Dec 4 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks fell on Thursday after European Central Bank president Mario Draghi brushed off pressure to act and said the bank would reassess the impact of its monetary policy stimulus early next year and take further action if necessary.

Energy sector stocks led the decline in the S&P 500 with a 1.5 percent drop that follows three days of gains in which they advanced 3.2 percent. The sector is down 8.7 percent year-to-date as crude oil prices tumbled.

The ECB met Thursday under growing pressure to prevent the bloc's economy from entering recession. The bank has already cut borrowing costs to record lows, given cheap loans to banks, and started buying debt to kick-start lending and bolster growth.

"They use (stimulus) as a stick. Every time they get a bad number or are worried about the European economy they threaten more QE but it's very difficult to implement," said Bruce Bittles, chief investment strategist at Robert W. Baird & Co in Nashville.

He said the market entered December overbought after a huge run off the October lows, and it faces technical headwinds. However, the end of year will probably see the market continue to run up.   Continuación...