Summary: Shares slide ahead of earnings season; bank stocks fall after Goldman moves up rate hike expectation; holiday box office worse since 1999, says boxofficemojo.com; King falls despite upgrade. Conway G. Gittens reports.
Wall Street rolls back from record highs with riskier small caps leading the way down. Losses were modest with the Dow down 44 points, the S&P 500 down 7 points, and the Nasdaq down 34 points. Rate speculation is increasing after last week's surprisingly strong jobs report. Goldman Sachs is moving up its target on when it thinks the Federal Reserve will start hiking rates to the third quarter of 2015 from the first quarter of 2016. Bank stocks noticeably weak ahead of the start of earnings season. Wells Fargo, which kicks things off Friday, lost nearly a full percent: Goldman, JPMorgan and Citi, all report next week, and were down as well. "Transformers: Age of Extinction" took the North American box office during the long holiday weekend, but it was quite easy. There was not a lot of competition to drive moviegoers to the theater. U.S. ticket sales down 47 percent from last year, making this the worst July 4th weekend for Hollywood in 15 years, according Boxofficemojo.com. Experts say, this year the box office is up against some tough comparisons due to a string of summer blockbusters in previous years and some blame weak moviegoing on the World Cup. Viacom's Paramount Pictures distributed "Transformers" - shares were down fractionally on the day. King Digital Entertainment, maker of Candy Crush, upgraded by Pipar Jaffray, who believes the game maker could see an upside surprise this earnings season. The analyst -citing company games as high ranking in the top grossing list for Apple apps. There's also high expectation Candy Crush Soda, which will be released later this year, will be a winner. But investors didn't seem to buy into the thesis and crushed shares by more than five percent. In Europe, jitters surrounding Europe's economic powerhouse - Germany - leading to selling in Germany, France and the UK.