Dow Jones Industrial Average Breaks 16,000 as Crude, China Rattle Markets

2 Oil Stocks Under Fire as Crude Implodes

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Jan 15, 2016 at 4:23 PM
Updated on Jan 15, 2016 at 4:23 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) was down nearly 537 points at its intraday low, but despite trimming a portion of those losses, the index settled south of the 16,000 level for the first time since late August. Fueling the bloodbath was yet another 12-year low for crude oil, a bleak milestone for China stocks, and two key economic indicators back at 2009 lows. Meanwhile, the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) landed back in correction territory, and the Russell 2000 Index (RUT) plunged to another two-year low.


Continue reading for more on today's market, including
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 15,988.08) finished the week on a brutal note, plunging roughly 391 points, or 2.4%. All 30 blue chips ended lower, paced by a 9.1% decline at Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) in the wake of earnings. On a weekly basis, the Dow lost 2.2%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,880.29) surrendered 41.6 points, or 2.2%, while the Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,488.42) plummeted 126.6 points, or 2.7%. Relative to last Friday's close, the SPX and COMP fell 2.2% and 3.3%, respectively.
  
The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 27.02) shot up about 3.1 points, or 12.8%, for its highest close since late September. However, for the week, the market's "fear gauge" edged up only 0.04%.

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5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. It was a rough day on the data front. Retail sales edged 0.1% lower in December, as expected, to cap their weakest year since 2009, with a total gain of 2.1% for all of 2015. Meanwhile, weakness in the mining and utilities sectors pressured industrial output to a steeper-than-forecast -- and third straight -- monthly drop. (Bloomberg Business; Reuters

  2. Retail colossus Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) announced it will be closing 269 stores, or about 2% of its global outlets, due to mounting competition from online retailers. About 16,000 employees, including 10,000 in the U.S., will be impacted by the decision. (The New York Times)

  3. How the FDA sparked a more than 50% sell-off in this biotech stock.

  4. Barrick Gold Corporation (USA) (NYSE:ABX) defied the market meltdown, as traders sought out safe-haven investments.

  5. Analysts are piling on as GoPro Inc (NASDAQ:GPRO) extends its run lower.


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Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Commodities:

Crude got crushed amid expectations that sanctions will be lifted on Iran -- allowing the nation's oil into an already oversupplied market -- and concerns about the state of China's economy. Oil prices hit a fresh 12-year low, wrapping up the worst two-week stretch since the 2008 financial crisis. By day's end, February crude futures were down $1.78, or 5.7%, at $29.42 per barrel. On a weekly basis, oil fell 11.3%.

The global stock rout proved to be a boon for gold -- though the precious metal's advance was contained by concerns about another rate hike, heightened by hawkish remarks from New York Fed President William Dudley. Specifically, February-dated gold added $17.10, or 1.6%, to settle at $1,090.70 per ounce -- but edged 0.7% lower week-over-week.


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