NEW YORK, March 3 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks ticked down in the morning session Friday as Wall Street awaited remarks from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen.
By midday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 26.50 points, or 0.13 percent, to 20,976.47. The S&P 500 lost 3.72 points, or 0.16 percent, to 2,378.20. The Nasdaq Composite Index decreased 7.07 points, or 0.12 percent, to 5,854.15.
Fed officials are in the spotlight. Yellen is set to speak on the economic outlook at the Executives Club of Chicago at 1:00 p.m. ET Friday, while Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer and Fed Governor Jerome Powell will also make speeches on the same day.
Concerns about a March rate hike are rising in recent weeks after several Fed officials made some hawkish comments on rate hikes.
Market expectations for a March rate hike were around 75 percent, according to the CME Group's FedWatch tool.
Meanwhile, investors became cautious after recent sharp increases. U.S. stocks have posted solid gains since Donald Trump won the presidential election, with the Dow surging over 14 percent.
On the economic front, the Non-Manufacturing Index, which measures activity in the U.S. service sector, registered 57.6 percent in February, beating market expectations of 56.5, the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said in its monthly survey Friday.
On Thursday, U.S. stocks retreated from record highs as worries about a March rate hike weighed on investor sentiment. Enditem