Closing Update: Stocks Tumble As Ukraine Jet Crash, Israeli Military Action Undermine Investor Confidence
Rising global tensions sent stocks sharply lower Thursday, with the major stock gauges ending near their session low after the Israeli government said it has begun ground operations in the Gaza Strip just before the U.S. markets' close.
The S&P 500 had its first single-day decline of over 1% since April as gold, U.S. Treasuries and other safe haven assets rose, with an in-air explosion of a Malaysian airliner over eastern Ukraine around mid-day also working to unnerve investors.
All 10 industry sectors in the S&P 500 fell, with energy and industrial stocks having the steepest declines, closely followed by shares of financial companies. Mining and materials stocks had the best relative day, declining less than 0.5% as a group, supported by rising precious-metal prices.
August gold rose $17 to finish at $1,316.90 per ounce, with haven trade picking up steam following the jet-crash reports. Also today, September silver added 37 cents to $21.44 per ounce while September copper climbed 1 cent to settle at $3.22 per pound.
Crude oil also rose as events in the Mid-East and Russia triggered supply concerns, with the benchmark August contract settling $1.97 higher at $103.15 per barrel while August natural gas was down 16 cents to finish at $3.96 per 1 million BTU.
Here's where the U.S. markets stood at the end-of-day:
Dow Jones Industrial Average down 161.39 (-0.94%) to 16,976.81
S&P 500 down 23.45 (-1.18%) to 1,958.12
Nasdaq Composite Index down 62.52 (-1.41%) to 4,363.45
Hang Seng Index down 0.01%
Shanghai China Composite Index down 0.57%
FTSE 100 Index down 0.68%
(+) BLFS, Announces three-year pact with Somahlution LLC to manufacture its DuraGraft medical devices to store blood vessels used in coronary artery bypass procedures. Financial terms were not disclosed.
(+) CBAN, Reports Q2 net income of $1.34 mln, or $0.16 per share, more than doubling its $611,000 profit during the year-ago quarter. No analyst estimates were available for comparison.
(+) DRC, Shares post biggest jump in over five years after Germany's Manager Magazin reported Siemens AG is preparing an offer for the oilfield-equipment maker.
(-) SNDK, Fiscal Q3 revenue outlook expecting between $1.675 bln to $1.725 bln trails analyst projections by at least $15 mln. Q2 EPS of $1.41 beats by $0.02 per share while its $1.63 bln in revenue tops Street by $30 mln.
(-) URZ, Announces plans to sell 8 million equity units at $1.25 apiece, with each unit consisting of one share of URZ common stock and one-half of a warrant to buy another share, exercisable at $1.60 a share over the next 30 months.
(-) CBAY, Plans public offering of 3.5 mln shares of its common stock, with the $18.9 mln in expected net proceeds slated to support ongoing development of its MBX-8025 drug candidate to treat dyslipidemia, steatohepatitis and type 2 diabetes.