NEW YORK (AA) – Wall Street ended slightly lower Monday as bullish statements from Federal Reserve officials worried investors about an interest rate hike this summer.
The Dow Jones fell 8 points to end the day at 17,492. The S&P 500 decreased 4 points to close at 2,048, while the Nasdaq was down 4 points to 4,765.
St. Louis Fed President James Bullard, a voting member on the Federal Open Market Committee, said Monday that interest rates being "too low for too long" may cause financial instability.
Labor markets are in a "tight condition", he said and that could push inflation higher to the Fed's 2 percent target.
Meanwhile, the head of the San Francisco Fed, John Williams, said interest rates may be raised three to four times this year, and an additional to five times in 2017.
About the U.K.'s possible exit from the EU after a June 23 referendum, Williams said the Fed can hold off rate hike until July. "But of course we could also make a decision to raise rates at a meeting, and if later on economic conditions for the U.S. change we can always move interest rates back down."
After the statements from the Fed officials, the dollar rose against a basket of currencies, which pushed oil prices lower.
At the final bell, American benchmark West Texas Intermediate was down 0.6 percent to $48.11 and international benchmark Brent crude fell 0.7 percent to $48.44.
Meanwhile, after German pharmaceutical giant Bayer AG announced Monday it made a cash offer to buy St. Louis-based Monsanto for $62 billion, the stock value of the American company rose by 4.4 percent.