Markets Right Now: Stocks turn jittery again, Dow sinks 500

Eileen GuzmanDec 07, 2018

The Nasdaq composite lost 3.8 percent to 7,158.43. The VIX Volatility Index was higher at 20.59 for a gain of 4.15 points or 25.24%. US stocks plunged on Tuesday, with all three major indices erasing more than 3 percent, amid worries over inverted yield curve signaling a possible economic slowdown.

Bond prices rose sharply. In the Treasury market, three-year yields are above five-year ones, foreshadowing the end of Federal Reserve's tightening campaign.

US stocks plunged Tuesday as rising concerns that an economic downturn lies ahead and mixed signals from the White House on the state of U.S. The Treasury held auctions for four-week bills at a rate of 2.320% and 52-week bills at a rate of 2.635%.

The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gave up 68.21 points, or 4.4 percent, to 1,480.75. The S&P 600 closed at 925.06 for a loss of 44.71 points or -4.61%.

Large banks were among the big losers, with JPMorgan Chase shedding 4.4 percent, Bank of American losing 5.7 percent and Citigroup 5.6 percent.

The Dow dropped 799 points, or 3.1 percent, to 25,027.

A note from S&P Global Ratings predicted that United States growth would slow from 2.9 per cent in 2018 to 2.3 per cent in 2019 and 1.8 per cent in 2020, adding that the USA was nearing the "latter" stages of a multi-year growth cycle. The Standard & Poor's 500 slid 3.2 percent to 2,700.06. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development forecast that global growth would slow from 3.7 percent this year to 3.5 percent in 2019 and 2020. The Nasdaq fell 283 points, or 3.8 percent, to 7,158.

Apple lost 3.7 per cent to $177.99 after the consumer electronics giant was downgraded by HSBC analysts, citing the possibility that iPhone volume and value growth may moderate due to a saturated mobile phone market.

AutoZone climbed 5.6 per cent to $870.65 after the auto parts retailer delivered third-quarter earnings that exceeded analysts' forecasts. The contract rose 30 cents on Tuesday to close at $53.25. Brent crude, used to price global oils, dropped $1.48 to $60.08 per barrel.

CURRENCY: The dollar gained to 112.95 yen from Wednesday's 112.78 yen. The euro was flat at $1.1345. The British pound fell to $1.2727 from $1.2728 after a top official at the European Union's highest court advised that Britain can unilaterally change its mind about leaving the EU as scheduled on March 29.

The S&P 500 lost 61 points, or 2.2 per cent, to 2,729. Shares also fell in Taiwan and all other regional markets. Germany's DAX lost 1.1 percent, while France's CAC 40 dropped 0.8 percent.

Defensive Utilities .SPLRCU eked out a 0.2 percent gain, the only one of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors in positive territory.

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