"The major market indexes were under heavy pressure early in the day, as European worries once again reared their ugly head," explained Senior Equities Analyst Joe Bell. "There was a resignation from a Greek official, more aid requests, and a seemingly never-ending disagreement among European officials about what to do next." And so, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) took a triple-digit tumble. As Bell pointed out, "Uncertainty leads to fear and fear quickly leads to selling."
Keep reading to see what else was on our radar today:
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI – 12,502.66) experienced a more than 181-point swing today -- from a session peak of 12,639.87 to a late-session bottom of 12,458.01 -- and ultimately suffered a 138.1-point, or 1.1%, loss by the time the dust settled. Twenty-nine of the 30 blue chips closed with deficits, as Bank of America (BAC) and Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) paced the underperforming issues with a 4.3% and 4.1% drop, respectively. Wal-Mart (WMT) was the lone winner, turning in a 1.3% gain.
The S&P 500 Index (SPX – 1,313.72) sawed off 21.3 points, or 1.6%, while the Nasdaq Composite (COMP – 2,836.16) sagged 56.3 points, or roughly 2% -- the worst performance of its fellow benchmarks.
The CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX – 20.38) soared 12.5% today, and tagged a session high of 21.36. This was the highest daily close for the VIX in over a week.
Today's highlight: "Although most sectors finished in the red, the market was able to regain a little footing as the day wore on," said Bell. "Homebuilders got a bit of good news from this morning's better-than-expected new home sales numbers, though the broad market selling pressure dampened the sector's response."
Turning to today's major market stories...
For today's activity in commodities, options, and more, head to page 2.
The Case for Big Moves in IWM and QQQ
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