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Stocks See Further Downside Following Initial Weakness - U.S. Commentary

After moving notably lower at the open, stocks have seen some further downside over the course of morning trading on Thursday. The major averages have slid more firmly into negative territory, pulling back further off their recent highs.

The considerable weakness that has emerged on Wall Street comes as disappointing economic data out of China and Europe has overshadowed another batch of upbeat U.S. data, including a report showing jobless claims at a four-year low.

With traders expressing concerns about the outlook for global demand, steel stocks are posting particularly steep losses on the day. Reflecting the weakness in the steel sector, the NYSE Arca Steel Index has tumbled by 3.6 percent.

Energy stocks have also moved sharply lower on the day, as the global demand worries have led to a notable drop by the price of crude oil. Crude for May delivery has plunged $2.49 to $104.78 a barrel.

Transportation, housing, and gold stocks are also seeing significant weakness, moving to the downside along with most of the major sectors.

The major averages have edged up off their lows for the session in the past few minutes but continue to post notable losses. The Dow is down 95.47 points or 0.7 percent at 13,029.15, the Nasdaq is down 20.02 points or 0.7 percent at 3,055.30 and the S&P 500 is down 12.31 points or 0.9 percent at 1,390.58.

by RTT Staff Writer

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