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Stocks Remain Firmly Negative In Mid-Afternoon Trading - U.S. Commentary

5/8/2012 2:06 PM ET

After moving sharply lower earlier in the session, stocks continue to see substantial weakness in mid-afternoon trading on Tuesday. The major averages have climbed off their worst levels of the day but remain stuck in negative territory.

The weakness on Wall Street reflects uncertainty about the political situation in Europe following recent elections in Greece and France.

Traders appear worried that the results of the elections will negatively impact recent efforts to address the European debt crisis.

Gold stocks are turning in some of the market's worst performances amid a sharp drop by the price of the precious metal. With gold for June delivery falling by nearly $35 an ounce, the NYSE Arca Gold Bugs Index is down by 4.1 percent.

Considerable weakness is also visible among steel stocks, which are moving lower amid concerns about the outlook for demand. The NYSE Arca Steel Index is down by 3.1 percent after hitting a four-month intraday low.

Electronic storage, oil service, housing, and telecom stocks are also posting steep losses, moving lower along with most of the major sectors.

The major averages have moved roughly sideways in recent trading, stuck well below the unchanged line. The Dow is down 137.10 points or 1.1 percent at 12,871.43, the Nasdaq is down 31.97 points or 1.1 percent at 2,925.79 and the S&P 500 is down 14.12 points or 1 percent at 1,355.46.

by RTT Staff Writer

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