Wall St falls ahead of earnings

US stocks continue lacklustre start to 2014, caution reigns ahead of earnings.

United States stocks have drifted lower as Wall Street entered the second full week of trade in the new year in restrained mode after an exuberant 2013 rally.

The market was largely steady in the morning before turning lower in the early afternoon as traders continued to digest the latest jobs report from the US government. There was also a note of caution ahead of earnings releases later in the week.

At 0515 AEDT, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 103.43 points, or 0.63%, at 16,333.62.

The broad-market S&P 500 drifted 12.36 points, or 0.67%, lower to 1,830.01 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq slipped 25.15 points, or 0.60%, to 4,149.51.

Wall Street was showing "some caution ahead of this week's plethora of key earnings reports," Charles Schwab & Co. said in a market note.