US stocks close lower for a third consecutive day

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Dow Jones Industrial Average

Last Updated at 19 Mar 2018, 19:58 GMT *Chart shows local time Dow Jones intraday chart
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(Close): US shares closed lower for a third consecutive trading day, losing early gains after the falling oil price once again hit investor sentiment.

Energy stocks were among the biggest losers with Chevron dropping 1.6% and Exxon Mobil falling 0.4%,

The Dow Jones industrial average closed 27 points, or 0.2%, lower at 17,613.7.

The S&P 500 index lost 5 points, or 0.3%, to 2,028.3, while the technology-focused Nasdaq composite fell 3 points, or 0.07%, to 4,661.5.

US government bond prices fell, increasing yields. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 1.93%.

"At present, equities remain an earnings-driven market, which is held hostage by oil," said Terry Sandven, senior equity strategist at US Bank Wealth Management in Minneapolis.

"On a positive note, while crude oil prices are weighing on earnings expectations for the broad market, they are bolstering consumer sentiment and adding to discretionary income levels."

Lenders including JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs and Citigroup are among the companies due to report this week, along with chip maker Intel.