U.S. stocks finished Friday's trading session with a loss as investors looked to lock in profits gained after the strongest September since 1988.
All three major U.S. stock indexes were lower on Friday but posted a gain for the month. For September, the Dow Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite Index rose 4.1 percent, while the Standard & Poor's 500 rose 3.8 percent.
Bluechip stocks on the Dow Jones Industrial average fell 17.31, or 0.1 percent to 13,895.63. The technology heavy Nasdaq Composite index dropped 8.09, or 0.3 percent, to 2,701.5. The broader Standard & Poor's 500 slid 4.63, or 0.3 percent to 1,526.75.
After a summer of turmoil in the credit and housing markets, U.S. fiscal policy makers at the Federal Reserve Bank decided to lower interest rates for the first time in four years on September 18 in an effort to jolt the economy with a boost of liquidity and keep it from sliding into recession.
After sharp decline throughout July and August, stocks soared last week as the Fed cut the benchmark overnight lending rate by half a percentage point to 4.75 percent.
Strength in the U.S. stock market was in stark contrast to a shift in the currency markets, as investors saw inflationary risk in the Fed's move. The dollar suffered a record drop against major currencies, ending the month at all-time lows. Cheaper access to the dollar saw the currency trading at an all time low against the euro for the seventh session on Friday, reaching $1.4279.
Commodities including oil and gold also saw record gains in September as investors fled to more stable investments.