Stocks closed lower on Thursday as hopes of a trade deal being struck between China and the U.S. dimmed.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 27.59 points to 25,338.84, snapping a three-day winning streak. The S&P 500 slipped 0.2 percent to 2,737.83 and also closed lower for the first time in four days. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.25 percent to 7,273.08.
The South China Morning Post reported White House advisor Peter Navarro would be attending the dinner between President Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping in Buenos Aires at the G-20. CNBC later confirmed Navarro's attendance. Stocks fell to their lows of the day on the news, with the Dow briefly losing more than 160 points.
News of his attendance dampened hopes that a trade deal could be hatched at the dinner given his longstanding hawkish tone on U.S.-China trade. Earlier this month, Navarro said any deal between the U.S. and China would be on Trump's terms, not Wall Street's. These comments were later disavowed by Larry Kudlow, director of the National Economic Council.
"This is not good news. Remember Navarro's book 'Death by China'? You don't want him anywhere near the meeting," said Andrew Brenner of National Alliance.
The U.S. has implemented tariffs on billions of dollars worth of Chinese goods this year. China has responded with tariffs of its own on U.S. goods. The ongoing spat has sent ripples across financial markets as investors assess its impact on corporate earnings and the economy.
The White House did not immediately return an email requesting comment.
The major averages rose after a summary from the Federal Reserve's most-recent meeting showed some officials think the federal funds rate could be "near its neutral level," possibly signaling fewer rate hikes down the road. The minutes came after Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said he considers the central bank's benchmark interest rate to be close to a neutral level, which marks a step away from comments made in recent months. His remarks sent stocks surging, with the Dow posting its second-best day of the year.