NEW YORK (AP) - Stocks are lower on Wall Street as traders worry about weak results from retailers and indications that the Federal Reserve may cut back on its economic stimulus.
It was the market's fifth straight decline, the longest losing streak since September.
Faster economic growth and a better outlook on hiring made investors anticipate that the U.S. central bank may be getting closer to reducing its huge bond-purchasing program, which has supported financial markets and kept long-term interest rates very low.
Retailers fell after reporting disappointing earnings and sales figures.
The Dow Jones industrial average lost 68 points, or 0.4 percent, to close at 15,821 Thursday.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell seven points, or 0.4 percent, to 1,785. The Nasdaq composite fell four points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,033.
The Associated Press