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1st LD Writethru: US stocks close sharply lower as retail, tech lag

23 November, 2018, 13:00 | Author: Kristi Dunn
  • James Denaro

USA stocks sold off across the board on Tuesday with the Dow Jones Industrial Average falling over 500 points.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 392 points, or 1.5 percent, to 25,017. Despite the gains Wednesday, the S&P 500 is down 3.2 per cent so far this week.

The jittery trading came after two days of gains last week as investors hoped that the US and China were moving closer to settling their costly trade fight, which has been a major uncertainty for the market.

Tokyo stocks opened sharply lower on Wednesday, following a plunge on Wall Street. SAP, which provides business software and cloud computing services, was down over 2 percent.

Energy companies are slumping because of a 7 percent plunge in the price of oil.

The Cboe Volatility Index, the most widely followed barometer of expected near- term volatility for the S&P 500, was down 1.68 points at 20.8. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 1.7 percent to 2,690.73. The Nasdaq Composite Index fell 119.65 points, or 1.70 percent, to 6,908.82.

"Since the mid to end September, a lot of investors have been anxious that there are issues that are going to prevent some big technology shares from making money in the future", Schlesinger said, adding that the decline in stocks doesn't mean we've entered a recession. Apple added 0.5 percent to $177.84. Industrial companies are also dropping as the downward momentum in stocks builds after steep losses Monday.

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Big technology and internet companies tumbled again Monday, leading to broad losses across the stock market.

Wholesale gasoline rose 0.4% to $1.58 a gallon. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks picked up 15 points, or 1.1 per cent, to 1,484.

In addition to the tech rebound, USA stocks also found support from speculation that the Federal Reserve could ease up on its path of interest-rate hikes, said Chad Morganlander, senior portfolio manager at Washington Crossing Advisors in Florham Park, New Jersey. The biggest decliners are Facebook, which has been hounded by data privacy issues, down almost 40 percent from its recent peak, and Netflix, which is off 37 percent. Boeing gave up 4.5 percent to $320.94, but is still one of the best-performing stocks in the 30-stock index.

Nissan fell over 5 per cent in Asia as traders there got their first chance to react to the news that its chairman, Carlos Ghosn, who engineered a turnaround at the automaker, was arrested on charges he underreported his income and misused company funds and will be fired.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 2.77-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 2.91-to-1 ratio favoured advancers.

The losses came after benchmark United States oil prices slid 6.6% to US$53.43 (RM223.84) per barrel, the lowest level in more than a year, amid worries over excess supply.

Benchmark U.S. crude reversed an early loss and rose 0.5% to $56.76 a barrel in NY. Google's Alphabet shares dropped by 1.4 percent. It fell 6.6 percent on Tuesday.

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