Stock markets tumble to lowest levels this year


Associated Press

NEW YORK — The Dow Jones industrial average plunged about 380 points Thursday while the Nasdaq composite index recorded its lowest close this year, as jittery investors reacted to the escalating violence in the Middle East.

Stocks already in a steady fall nosedived, pushing the Dow to its fifth-largest largest point loss ever, buffeted by rising oil prices on top of persistent fears about corporate profits, including an earnings warning from stalwart Home Depot.

The Dow closed down 382.07 at 10,031.72, a 3.7 percent decline, according to preliminary results.

Broader markets were also lower. The Nasdaq composite was down 94.43 to 3,074.06 — its lowest close of 2000. The Standard &amp Poor’s 500 index was off 34.90 to 1,329.69.

"In an already nervous market, this is all we didn’t need," said Al Goldman, an analyst with A.G. Edwards &amp Sons Inc. in St. Louis. "A terrorist attack, increased hostilities in the Middle East and a spike in oil prices — shake it all up and you get blind dumping of stocks."

The apparent terrorist attack on a U.S. military ship in Yemen early in the day sent oil prices up as much as 10 percent, helping to re-ignite inflation fears. And Israeli combat helicopters rocketed Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat’s residential compound in the Gaza Strip as well as a West Bank town in retaliation for the brutal killing of two Israeli soldiers by a Palestinian mob.

Oil prices were as high as $37.00 a barrel at one point on the New York Mercantile Exchange, approaching its recent 10-year high of $37.80 a barrel hit last month. In afternoon trading, crude futures were at $36.10.

Meanwhile, shares of Home Depot, the nation’s largest home improvement retailer, plunged $13.94, or 28 percent, to $35 after it warned of lower-than-expected earnings because of material costs and other factors.

The news sent other retailers down as well, including Wal-Mart, while financial stocks suffered as well.

Fears that higher oil costs would hurt airlines sent Continental Airlines down $2.81 at $41.13. Airplane manufacturer Boeing fell $4.06 to $56.13.

Technology stocks were mixed. Advanced Micro Devices rose 31 cents to $22.13 after reporting earnings ahead of Wall Street expectations. But Yahoo tumbled again on worries about future earnings, falling $8.75 to $56.63.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers by more than 3 to 1 on the New York Stock Exchange, where volume came to 1.11 billion shares, virtually unchanged from the previous session.

The Russell 2000 index was down 11.95 at 462.79.

Copyright ©2000 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Funko mascots Freddy Funko roll past on a conveyor belt in the Pop! Factory of the company's new flagship store on Aug. 18, 2017.  (Dan Bates / The Herald)
Lawsuit: Funko misled investors about Arizona move

A shareholder claims Funko’s decision to relocate its distribution center from Everett to Arizona was “disastrous.”

1 stabbed at apartment in Lynnwood

The man, 26, was taken to an Everett hospital with “serious injuries.”

A firefighting helicopter carries a bucket of water from a nearby river to the Bolt Creek Fire on Saturday, Sep. 10, 2022, on U.S. Highway 2 near Index, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Red flag fire warning issued west of Cascades

There are “critical fire weather” conditions due to humidity and wind in the Cascades, according to the National Weather Service.

A house fire damaged two homes around 1:30 a.m. Tuesday, June 6, 2023 in Marysville, Washington. (Photo provided by Marysville Fire District)
Fire burns 2 homes in Marysville, killing 2 dogs

Firefighters responded to a report of a fire north of Lakewood Crossing early Tuesday, finding two houses engulfed in flames.

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Mountlake Terrace in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Mountlake Terrace eyes one-time projects for $2.4M in federal funds

Staff recommended $750,000 for a new roof and HVAC at the library, $250,000 toward a nonprofit facility in Lynnwood and more.

The Snohomish River turns along the edge of the Bob Heirman Wildlife Preserve at Thomas’ Eddy on Wednesday, May 3, 2023 in Snohomish, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
To build a healthier Snohomish River, more log jams

About $2.8M in grants will help engineer log jams, tear down levees and promote salmon restoration at Bob Heirman Wildlife Preserve.

Dave "Bronco" Erickson stands next to the pink-and-purple 1991 Subaru Justy hatchback “Pork Chop Express” car that he is seeking to re-home for $500. The car has been on Whidbey Island for years, mainly as yard art. (Andrea Brown / The Herald)
For sale: Whidbey’s fabled ‘Pork Chop Express’ gets great smileage

Asking price is $500 for the 1991 Subaru Justy, a three-cylinder econobox with 65K miles and a transmission as rare as hen’s teeth.

People begin parading down First Street with a giant balloon “PRIDE” during Snohomish’s inaugural Pride celebration on Saturday, June 3, 2023, in downtown Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Your guide to Pride in Snohomish County

Mark your calendars; Pride Month is upon us.

Twin sisters Lyndsay Lamb (left) and Leslie Davis (right), co-hosts of HGTV's Unsellable Houses. (Photo provided)
Meet and greet HGTV’s ‘Unsellable Houses’ twin sister stars in Snohomish on Friday

Lyndsay Lamb and Leslie Davis have made Lamb & Co. a #twinwin home-selling, home-goods brand.

Most Read