News Column

Major Average Posting Steep Losses In Early Trading

May 15, 2014

WASHINGTON (Alliance News) - Stocks have moved sharply lower in early trading on Thursday, extending the downward move seen over the course of the previous session. The major averages have slid firmly into negative territory, with the Dow and the S&P 500 pulling back further off their record highs.

The early weakness on Wall Street partly reflects a negative reaction to quarterly results from Wal-Mart (WMT), with the retail giant falling by 1.9% in early trading.

The drop by Wal-Mart comes after the company reported first quarter earnings that missed analyst estimates and forecast weaker than expected second quarter earnings.

Traders are also digesting a mixed batch of US economic data, with disappointing readings on industrial production and homebuilder confidence seemingly overshadowing an upbeat jobs report.

Oil service stocks have shown a substantial move to the downside, dragging the Philadelphia Oil Service Index down by 2.6% to a nearly two-month low. The weakness in the sector comes amid a decrease by the price of crude oil.

Significant weakness has also emerged among biotechnology stocks, as reflected by the 2.3% loss being posted by the NYSE Arca Biotechnology Index. Incyte (INCY) has helped to lead the sector lower, tumbling by 8.2%.

Brokerage, airline and housing stocks are also seeing considerable weakness in early trading, moving lower along with most of the other major sectors.

The major averages have recently climbed off their lows for the young session but continue to post steep losses. The Dow is down 147.45 points or 0.9% at 16,466.52, the Nasdaq is down 48.89 points or 1.2% at 4,051.74 and the S&P 500 is down 19.20 points or 1% at 1,869.33.

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Source: Alliance News