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Indices bounce off lows but still in red

On a relatively quiet day on Wall Street, stocks pared their declines deep in the trading session.

Shares wavered narrowly in the red in afternoon trading in New York, moving away from the lows of the day after an economic strategist at Blackstone Group forecast US economic growth above 3% for 2014.

Byron Wien, vice chairman of Blackstone’s advisory department, said in his annual ‘10 Surprises’ note (a list of events that he identifies as being more than 50% likely but which investors apportion only a 1/3 chance of occurring) that the S&P 500 will rally 20% after a 10% correction and US economic growth will exceed 3%.

With around 15 minutes to the close in New York, the Dow Jones was down just 0.1%, while the S&P 500 was off by 0.13%.

Twitter fell more than 3% after Morgan Stanley became the latest broker to downgrade the social media company, cutting its rating on the stock to underweight, equivalent to a sell rating.

An analyst at Morgan Stanley said in a note today that ‘as competition for online ad dollars intensifies, we guide investors to Google and Facebook, dominant platforms with more attractive risk/reward.’

The note went on to say that ‘despite the ease at which users can sign up for Twitter, we think it is inherently more complicated to understand how to get the most out of Twitter, compared to Facebook’s service, which is easier to use.’

Morgan Stanley was one of the banks that helped manage Twitter’s IPO.

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