US STOCKS-Oil drags on Dow, S&P; Nasdaq boosted by Applied Materials

viernes 19 de agosto de 2016 12:57 GYT

* All eyes on Fed; Jackson Hole meeting next week

* Applied Materials jumps as forecast tops estimates

* Energy stocks drop as oil prices reverse gains

* Indexes down: Dow 0.20 pct, S&P 0.25 pct, Nasdaq 0.08 pct (Updates to early afternoon)

By Tanya Agrawal

Aug 19 (Reuters) - The Dow Jones and S&P 500 were lower on Friday afternoon, pulled down by energy stocks as oil prices dropped, while the Nasdaq was little changed as Applied Materials boost technology stocks.

Applied Materials rose 7.3 percent after the chip equipment maker gave a strong current-quarter profit forecast. That helped the technology index inch up 0.21 percent, making it one of only two of the 10 major S&P sectors that were higher.

Energy stocks fell 0.86 percent as Brent crude oil dropped after hitting an eight-week high, with weak fundamentals countering a lift in sentiment over a possible output freeze.

Investors, mulling about when the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates next, were also cagey ahead of next week's meeting of global central bankers in Jackson Hole, Wyoming where Fed Chair Janet Yellen is likely to cement expectations for a slow pace of rate increases.   Continuación...