landsberg bennettThe major averages extended their recent retreat from their respective all-time highs notched earlier this week, as investors digested the latest developments on the trade front. The Dow fell 54 points, while the S&P 500 lost 0.2%, with both benchmark indexes declining for a third straight session. The Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.2%.

A report showed Chinese Vice Premier Liu He invited the U.S. to Beijing to further negotiations and said he is “cautiously optimistic” about a phase one deal. Meanwhile, U.S. political intervention tempered investor sentiment after the House passed legislation that supports Hong Kong anti-government protesters. On the data front, the leading economic index decreased 0.1% in October, in-line with projections. A separate report showed existing home sales rose 1.9% in October, rebounding from the prior month’s downwardly revised 2.5% decline. Treasuries weakened, with the yield on the 10-year note rising four basis points to 1.77%.

Eight of 11 S&P 500 sectors ended in negative territory with Real Estate group lagging the most. Consumer Discretionary shares also underperformed with Macy’s losing 2.3% after posting its first same store sales decline in two-years and cutting full-year guidance. L Brands bucked the sector’s downward trend, jumping 10.1% after issuing solid third quarter earnings results. In M&A news, TD Ameritrade surged 16.9% following reports that Charles Schwab was interested in acquiring the online brokerage firm. PayPal lost 1.5% after announcing an acquisition of privately held Honey Science for $4 billion.

In commodities, WTI crude jumped 2.5% to $58.43/barrel, near a nine-week high. COMEX gold fell 0.6% to $1,464.80/ounce.