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US STOCKS-Wall Street ends lower on slide in Apple shares, bank stocks

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(For a Reuters live blog on U.S., UK and European stock markets, click or type LIVE/ in a news window)

* Dow, S&P 500, Nasdaq down

* Apple shares fall after report on slowing hiring

* Boeing rises as Delta to buy 100 737 MAX 10 planes (Adds comments, updates with closing prices)

By Echo Wang

July 18 (Reuters) - Wall Street stocks closed lower on Monday after bank stocks erased earlier gains and Apple shares fell on a report saying the company plans to slow hiring and spending growth next year.

After posting solid gains to start the session following earnings from Bank of America Corp and Goldman Sachs Group Inc, the S&P financial sector weakened into the close.

Apple shares reversed course to trade down on a Bloomberg report that said the company plans to slow hiring and spending growth next year in some units to cope with a potential economic downturn.

Goldman Sachs advanced as it reported a smaller-than-expected 48% slump in second-quarter profit, helped by strength in its fixed-income trading.

Worries about a larger one percentage point rate hike at the end of July eased following remarks from Fed officials last week that the policymakers could stick to a 75 basis point hike.

"It's really hard to sustain upward momentum," said Ross Mayfield, investment strategy analyst at Baird in Louisville, Kentucky. "And that's kind of the story of bear markets."

According to preliminary data, the S&P 500 lost 32.43 points, or 0.84%, to end at 3,830.73 points, while the Nasdaq Composite lost 95.54 points, or 0.83%, to 11,356.88. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 215.12 points, or 0.69%, to 31,073.14.

Earnings from big technology companies next week will be closely watched, after their shares came under immense selling pressure through much of this year.

Among other shares, Boeing Co jumped after Delta Air Lines Inc said it would buy 100 MAX 10 jets worth about $13.5 billion at list prices and had options to buy another 30. Shares of Delta also jumped. (Reporting by Echo Wang in New York; Additional reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal, Bansari Mayur Kamdar and Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta, Anil D'Silva and Deepa Babington)