Dow Plummets 234 Points as Fear Grips Wall Street

United Technologies led the Dow losers, with bank stocks also getting hit

Josh Selway
Sep 5, 2017 at 4:28 PM
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U.S. stocks were battered today, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) ending its four-day win streak with a 234-point loss. Traders digested a slew of negative headlines, including increasing tensions with North Korea, and another potentially devastating storm in Hurricane Irma, now a Category 5 storm. Steep M&A-related losses for Dow stock United Technologies didn't help, with bank stocks also getting clobbered amid dovish Fed talk. With the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and the Nasdaq Composite (COMP) following the Dow sharply lower, the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) enjoyed its best day since Aug. 17, while demand soared for "safe haven" assets such as gold. 

Continue reading for more on today's market, including:

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 21,753.31) extended its losses as the day worse on, giving back 234.3 points, or 1.1% -- its worst day since Aug. 17. At the same time, the Dow bottomed out near its 50-day moving average, which neatly contained its two August pullbacks. Just eight Dow stocks closed higher, with Wal-Mart having the best day, closing up 1.8%. UTX's 5.7% sell-off paced the 22 losers. 

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,457.85) fell 18.7 points, or 0.8%, to snap its six-day win streak. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 6,375.57) gave back 59.8 points, or 0.9%, ending its own five-session win streak. It was the indexes' worst day since Aug. 17

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 12.23) rose 2.1 points, or 20.7%. Earlier, the VIX peaked at 14.06. 

Closing Indexes Summary Sept 5
NYSE and Nasdaq Stats Sept 5

5 Items on Our Radar Today

  1. The Trump administration has officially announced it'll be ending Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, known as DACA, which protects an estimated 800,000 young people from deportation. The program will come to an end next March, with President Trump urging Congress to pass immigration legislation. (CNBC)
  2. Toy giant Lego is laying off 1,400 people due to falling sales. The struggles come as children gravitate toward digital entertainment.  (USA Today)
  3. 3 healthcare stocks that made huge moves today. 
  4. A rare options observation for AMD stock
  5. Today's big bull note on Snap stock


Unusual Options Activity Sept 5
Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Commodities

Crude futures jumped today, thanks to news that many refineries affected by Hurricane Harvey are up and running. October-dated crude rose $1.37, or 2.9%, to end at $48.66 per barrel. 

Today's geopolitical fears had gold in demand. Gold dated for December gained $14.10, or 1.1%, to close at $1,344.50 per ounce. 

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