Stocks lost ground on Thursday, as investors tried to figure out whether they should be rooting for strong or weak economic data in light of its impact on future decisions from the Federal Reserve on monetary policy. The S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC) had dropped 29 points to 4,451, and the Nasdaq Composite (NASDAQINDEX: ^IXIC) had declined 106 points to 15,056. With all the huge gains that high-growth tech stocks have delivered over the past year, many investors have stopped paying attention to commodities markets like gold and silver.
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