* Oil down more than 1 pct, ends 3-day rally
* Bank of America leads financials lower
* Weekly jobless claims unexpectedly fall
* Indexes down: Dow 0.25 pct, S&P 0.32 pct, Nasdaq 0.25 pct (Updates to open)
By Yashaswini Swamynathan
June 9 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks fell on Thursday morning, led by financials and as lower oil prices weighed on energy companies.
Oil prices were down 1.5 percent as traders took profits after a three-day rally.
The S&P financial index was down about 1 percent, while the energy index fell 0.7 percent.
The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits unexpectedly fell last week, pointing to sustained strength in the labor market despite a sharp slowdown in hiring last month.
The jobless claims data gave investors their first read of the labor market since Friday when dismal May payrolls numbers jolted the markets.
The Dow closed above the 18,000 mark on Wednesday for the first time since April, while the S&P 500 is less than 1 percent shy of its record intraday high.
“There is no fresh catalyst to drive the markets higher, even though it’s a stone’s throw away from record highs,” said Andre Bakhos, managing director at Janlyn Capital LLC in Bernardsville, New Jersey.
“This shows some nervousness over the quality of the rally.”
At 9:57 a.m. EDT the Dow Jones industrial average was down 44.89 points, or 0.25 percent, at 17,960.16.
The S&P 500 was down 6.84 points, or 0.32 percent, at 2,112.28, distancing itself from its record high of 2134.72 in May last year.
The Nasdaq Composite was down 12.45 points, or 0.25 percent, at 4,962.20.
Six of the 10 major S&P sectors were lower, led by financials. Bank of America and Wells Fargo both were down about 2 percent.
Chesapeake Energy fell 5 percent to $4.72 after an RBC downgrade. Other energy stocks also dropped with oil prices.
Oracle fell 0.4 percent to $39.11 after a U.S. judge rejected the company’s bid to overturn a jury verdict in favor of Google parent Alphabet.
J.M. Smucker jumped 5.4 percent to $139.87 after the processed foods maker reported better-than-expected rise in quarterly sales.
Restoration Hardware tumbled 19 percent to $29.20 after issuing a weak forecast.
Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 2,040 to 713. On the Nasdaq, 1,695 issues fell and 708 advanced.
The S&P 500 index showed 26 new 52-week highs and no new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 32 new highs and 11 new lows. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D‘Souza)