Stocks Close Lower, but Notch Weekly Gains

U.S. stocks finished lower on Friday amid worries strong data will prompt the Fed to raise rates this summer. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 60.59 points, or 0.34%, to 17,824.29. The S&P 500 lost 7.05 points, or 0.34%, to 2,055.47. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 20.70 points, or 0.43%, to 4,744.40. For the week, the Dow rose 3.8%, the S&P rose 3% and the Nasdaq rose 2.4%.

Consumer credit grew at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.4%, for a gain of $14.8 billion in December, the Federal Reserve said Friday as credit card loans outpaced nonrevolving debt for the first time since April.

Oil rallied again on Friday, with benchmark Brent crude having its largest two-week gain in 17 years. Brent futures posted a 9 percent gain on the week. Brent settled up $1.23, or 2.2 percent, on the day at $57.80 a barrel. U.S. crude closed up $1.21, or 2.4 percent, at $51.69.

Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services on Friday cut Greece’s sovereign rating one notch further into junk territory, citing the country’s growing cash constraints.

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