Stocks Slip with Manufacturing Data, Walmart cuts gasoline price

U. S. stocks fell in light volume on Monday,after economic data showed an unexpected drop in manufacturing activity. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 5.69 points, or 0.04%, at 14,572.85. The S&P 500 index shed 7.02 points, or 0.45%, to 1,562.17. The Nasdaq Composite declined 28.35 points, or 0.87%, to 3,239.17.

The pace of sales and production at U.S. manufacturers cooled off in March, reflecting the uneven nature of the nation’s economic recovery. The Institute for Supply Management’s survey of senior executives fell to 51.3% from 54.2% in February. While a number over 50% signals industry expansion, the latest ISM reading was a disappointment to Wall Street

Walmart is cutting gasoline prices by up to 15 cents a gallon for drivers in 21 U.S. states who pay withits cards in an attempt to woo shoppers grappling with high prices at the pump. The discount will be 15 cents a gallon for customers paying with a Walmart MoneyCard or credit card from April 1 through July 7, and 10 cents a gallon for those using a Wal-Mart gift card, Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT.N) said in a statement on Monday.

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