A selloff in banks halted the stock market's four-day rally. Treasuries rose as data on job openings boosted expectations that the Federal Reserve is nearing the end of its tightening campaign.
A gauge of financial behemoths such as Wells Fargo and Citigroup fell 2%. Regional lenders were dragged down by Zions Bancorporation and First Republic Bank, which fell at least 4.8%. JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon warned in his annual letter to shareholders that the US banking crisis that sent markets tumbling last month will be felt for years.
Two-year yields fell by up to 14 basis points to around 3.8%. Swap contracts referencing Fed meeting dates reduced the probability of a quarter-point rate hike in May to just under 50%, from around 60%. The value of the dollar decreased.
Vacancies at US employers have reached their lowest level since May 2021, according to the Labor Department's Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, or JOLTS. The figures come ahead of Friday's jobs report, which is expected to show that employers added nearly a quarter-million workers in March. Economists predict that the unemployment rate will remain at a historically low 3.6%, while average hourly earnings will rise sharply.