"China kicked things off with weak economic data last night, and the selling only accelerated after U.S. economic data was a little weak itself," observed Schaeffer's Senior Technical Strategist Ryan Detrick, CMT, of a day that saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) post a triple-digit decline. "The earnings we saw today weren't too bad, but that was overshadowed by the poor economic data. Still, the one concern I've had is that retail and consumer discretionary stocks have done very poorly so far in 2013. Is this the canary in the coal mine? Well, I'm not sure, but it is definitely a crack in the armor."
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 16,197.35) dropped for the third consecutive day -- losing 176 points, or 1.1% -- and closed at its lowest point since Dec. 19. AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) led the Dow's seven advancers with a gain of 1.4%, while American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) brought up the rear, down 2.2%.
The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,828.46) also fell, giving back 16.4 points, or 0.9%. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,218.87) declined 24.1 points, shedding 0.6%.
Not surprisingly, the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 13.77) closed solidly higher on the day, adding 0.9 point, or 7.2%. With this move, the market's fear barometer settled above its 20-day moving average for just the second time in 2014.
A Trader's Take:
5 Items on Our Radar Today:
For a look at today's options movers and commodities activity, head to page 2.
Why OIH Is Finding Key Support at $52
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