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US indexes mostly fall; travel companies drop after attacks

U.S. stock indexes closed mostly lower Tuesday as airlines, cruise companies and travel booking sites fell after the deadly bombings in Belgium. | AP Photo

U.S. stock indexes closed mostly lower Tuesday as airlines, cruise companies and travel booking sites fell after the deadly bombings in Belgium.

News of the attacks, which killed at least 34 people, pulled the broader market lower for much of the morning. An early afternoon rally erased some of the losses, but the rebound didn’t hold.

Oil drilling companies also slumped following a downbeat forecast on drilling. Health care and technology stocks gained ground.

The last-minute slide snapped a four-day winning streak for the market. Trading was relatively light, reflecting the Easter holiday weekend. It also signaled that traders were not rattled by the potential market implications of the attack.

“This is the new investing normal now,” said Chris Gaffney, president of EverBank World Markets. “You’re going to have these big tragic events, so I don’t think investors are really too concerned with it long-term.”

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 41.30 points, or 0.2 percent, to 17,582.57. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index dipped 1.80 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,049.80. The Nasdaq composite added 12.79 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,821.66.

The three main U.S. stock indexes headed lower early on Tuesday as traders digested the news that bombs had struck the Brussels airport and one of the city’s metro stations. Belgium raised its terror alert to the highest level. Airports across Europe tightened security. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attacks.

The major European stock markets declined early on, but ultimately closed higher.