DJ30 PointChange: -131.46 Level: 11823.48 NASDAQ PointChange: -39.96 Level: 2539.31 NQ100 PercentChange: -1.6 R2K PercentChange: -1.3 SP400 PercentChange: -1.6 SP500 PointChange: -13.91 Level: 1211.82 NASDAQ-Adv:902 Dec: 1672 NYSE-Adv:844 Dec: 2195
The stock market's third straight tumble has it down more than 3% this
week. The downward path comes as participants revert to a negative bias
bolstered by the absence of progress related to the improvement of
Europe's precarious conditions.
For three straight days the path of least resistance for stocks has
been downward. Negative sentiment has been induced by a muddled and
tenuous macro outlook. Moreover, participants are growing weary of the
lack of progress by Europe's leaders in restoring economic and financial
conditions in both the core and periphery of the continent. That has
provided fodder for rumors of further sovereign debt downgrades in the
Dwindling confidence in the region has the euro on a downward path.
It dropped to an 11-month low, before stabilizing and finishing the
session with a 0.4% loss at $1.298.
Efforts to pare risk extended to commodities, causing the CRB Index
to drop 3.4%. The CRB hasn't had such a poor performance since
September. Among the more closely tracked commodities, gold futures
prices fell 4.6% to settle at $1587.70 per ounce, while silver futures
prices were pressed to $28.86 per ounce for a 7.6% loss. Crude oil ended
down 5.2% at $94.95 per barrel -- a smaller-than-expected weekly
inventory draw didn't help.
The combination of sharply lower oil prices and broad market weakness
made energy plays today's poorest performers. The sector slid almost to
a loss of almost 3%. Everything from exploration plays to drillers to
refiners were caught up in the sector's sell-off.
Benefiting from the drop in oil prices, airline shares ascended in
the face of broad market weakness. Meanwhile, financials managed to
limit losses to a collective decline of only 0.3%, despite the possible
implications if problems in Europe persist, let alone worsen.
Treasuries extended their gains. Another strong auction helped.
Results from an offering of 30-year Bonds drew a bid-to-cover of 3.05,
dollar demand of $39.7 billion, and an indirect bidder rate of 32.5%.
For comparison, an average of the past six auctions gives a bid-to-cover
of 2.62, dollar demand of $36.4 billion, and indirect bidder
participation of 31.6%.
Advancing Sectors: (None)
Health Care -0.2%, Financials -0.3%, Consumer Staples -0.5%, Telecom
-0.6%, Utilities -0.8%, Industrials -1.1%, Consumer Discretionary -1.2%,
Materials -1.2%, Tech -1.7%, Energy -2.7%