Amid a turbulent start to the year, major stock indexes pared early gains and turned negative Thursday, with a sell-off intensifying into the afternoon.

Technology was again under pressure, with the Nasdaq losing more than 2 percent.

Edward Jones analysts said investors are likely fearing that reports of four rate hikes in 2022 and growing Omicron cases will see a slowdown in gross domestic product growth and weigh on high-multiple tech companies.

The U.S. Treasury 10-year yield was down to 1.69 percent, but analysts think it will move toward 2 percent over the next few months as a likely increase in the target interest rate from the Federal Reserve Bank approaches.

European and Asian shares were mixed.

The price of crude oil was down $1.12 to $81.52 a barrel, and the spot price of gold was down $6 to $1,820.90.

Wholesale prices, a measure of inflation for manufacturers and retailers, rose more slowly than expected. Although the inflation reading was historically high, analysts expect markets will view it as a positive sign. Investors have been watching for hints that extraordinary inflationary pressures could be easing, as supply-chain issues are flattened out and demand shifts from goods to services.

The Federal Reserve is expected to have between two and four rate hikes in 2022 to slow down inflation and prevent the economy from overheating.

Several big-name companies released favorable guidance Thursday, including Delta Airlines, KB Home and Boeing. Although Omicron has quickly become the dominant variant in new cases, its economic impact appears to be limited, and companies continue to see strong demand returning for travel and leisure. This bodes well for economic growth in 2022, which analysts think will continue to be above trend before evening out in 2023.

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