US stocks keep sliding on weak data, Fed qualms

Stocks continued a two-day slide — the S&P is headed for its first weekly loss of 2013 — on weak economic data and concern about the Fed’s resolve to keep juicing the economy. More people sought jobless benefits last week; a less-volatile four-week average rose to its highest in six weeks. A monthly survey showed Europe’s business activity slowed in February. US indexes have soared to the highest levels since the crisis but ‘the market has gotten ahead of itself,’ says Fort Pitt Capital’s Kim Caughey Forrest. Walmart rose after it beat profit forecasts but warned the year has been slow, noting that customers have less money since payroll taxes rose.