Closing Update: Stocks Lose Altitude as Geo-Political Shocks Dominate

By Staff,

Shutterstock photo

The stock market was back on the defensive Thursday with nervous investors bailing out of risky assets on worries about the economic fall-out from Moscow's retaliatory actions toward Western imports and renewed tensions in Iraq.

Opening gains tied to upbeat data on the U.S. jobs market and positive earnings were compromised early in the session after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi warned of the negative impact geopolitical events will have on the fragile European economy. Selling pressure gained momentum after a warning towards Russia by the NATO Secretary General, and the possibility of U.S. airstrikes against ISIS insurgents in Iraq, which combined to push the Dow Jones Industrial Average to its 200-day moving average.

Before the open, futures got a small boost from an unexpected 14,000 drop in initial jobless benefits claims for the week ended August 2 to 289,000. This beat estimates for a small gain to 305,000 from a revised 303,000 the week prior. As a result of the recent drop in new claims, the four-week average dropped to an eight-year low of 293,500.

Although corporate earnings were largely overshadowed by global events, several heavy hitters reported strong Q2 results, including 21st Century Fox ( FOX ), Wendy's ( WEN ), and Chiquita Brands ( CQB ).

Here's where the markets stand at the close:


Dow Jones Industrial Index was down 75 points (-0.5%) at 16,368

S&P 500 was down 10.7 points (-0.6%) at 1,909

Nasdaq Composite Index was down 20 points (-0.5%) at 4,334


FTSE 100 was down 0.58%

Nikkei 225 was up 0.48%

Hang Seng Index was down 0.80%

Shanghai China Composite Index was down 1.34%


(+) LGP Membership interests sold to CST Brands ( CST ) for approximately $85 mln

(+) SAAS Reported stronger Q2 revenue and received an upgrade at Oppenheimer to Outperform

(+) SFUN Higher Q2 results, declares $1 dividend

(+) VGGL User data for July 2014 was best month ever


(-) THOR Missing estimates and guiding full-year results below consensus

(-) NSPH Reports 44% gain in revenue, narrows Q2 net loss

(-) COUP Mixed Q2 results, issues guidance below consensus estimates

(-) ARCI Reported weak Q2 results

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2014 All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

This article appears in: Investing Commodities
Referenced Stocks: FOX , WEN , CQB , CST

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