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By Kim Khan 

Investing.com – Stocks closed in the red Friday, but well off lows thanks to some late-day buying in what was another hectic final hour of trading.

The lost 1.71% and the sank 1.87%. The fell 0.98%, or 256 points.

As stocks fell, bonds rallied, pushing yields to historic lows again. The benchmark stood around 0.7%. It slipped below that level for the first time ever earlier.

Energy stocks bore the brunt of the selling as plunged 10% after OPEC and Russia failed to come up with a deal expected to cut 1.5 million barrels per day off global supply.

“Despite the expectation that Russia was just trying to play coy with the market for maximum market effect … their resistance to production cuts is real,” said Phil Flynn, analyst at the Price Futures Group brokerage in Chicago.

In a market experiencing this many sharp swings, sudden bursts and record-sized moves, it seems almost quixotic to pinpoint one reason why stocks were up or down.

But looking at bonds and fed funds futures, the market is telling us that it really wants rates down and indications of that could have been enough to spur the late-session buying.

Federal Reserve regional bank presidents John Williams and Eric Rosengren, who participated in New York event today, were hinting at more rate cuts to come, according to published reports.

That might have eased some worries that the strong February numbers would give the FOMC pause about cutting again.

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