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Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange on June 14, 2024.

Brendan Mcdermid | Reuters

Stocks fell on Thursday as investors continued pulling back on technology shares.

The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite lost 0.5%. The S&P 500 dropped 0.5%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 260 points, or 0.6%.

The Nasdaq’s slide marks a continuation of the broader shift away from tech seen in recent days. Wall Street has dumped shares of artificial intelligence plays as the growing likelihood of a September interest rate cut from the Federal Reserve bolstered optimism in the broader market. On the other hand, that’s largely helped small-cap and more cyclical names, which are seen as bigger beneficiaries of lower borrowing costs.

This trend came to a head on Wednesday, when the Nasdaq tumbled 2.8% in its worst day since December 2022. Wednesday also marked the first session since 2001 where the Nasdaq posted a loss exceeding 2.5%, while the blue-chip Dow registered a gain.

But Thursday’s sell-off appeared broader than tech alone, with eight of the 11 sectors that comprise the S&P 500 lower. More than half of Dow members also headed for losses.

Still, the bigger theme of moving away from tech explains why the small-cap focused Russell 2000 has jumped more than 8% in the last five trading days, despite also sliding in Thursday’s session. By comparison, the Nasdaq has slipped more than 4% over the last week.

“Obviously, Fed easing rates is going to be good for small businesses,” said Charlie Ripley, senior investment strategist at Allianz. Meanwhile, there’s “some prudence and profit taking with the tech trade that’s been so profitable this year.”

In corporate news, Discover Financial popped nearly 2% after its second-quarter results topped expectations. Beyond Meat tumbled 10% after The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar, that the meat substitute company is meeting with bondholders to begin discussions about restructuring its balance sheet.

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