U.S. Stocks Moving Sharply Lower Amid Renewed Ukraine Invasion Worries
Stocks have moved sharply lower over the course of morning trading on Thursday, with the major averages moving back to the downside following the recovery attempt seen late in the previous session.
The major averages have seen further downside in recent trading, falling to new lows for the session. The Dow is down 471.51 points or 1.4 percent at 34,462.76, the Nasdaq is down 221.55 points or 1.6 percent at 13,902.55 and the S&P 500 is down 62.40 points or 1.4 percent at 4,412.61.
The sharp pullback on Wall Street comes amid renewed geopolitical concerns, as the Biden administration has reverted to describing a Russian invasion of Ukraine as “imminent”
“The evidence on the ground is that Russia is moving toward an imminent invasion. This is a crucial moment,” U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield told reporters this morning.
President Joe Biden also told reporters as was leaving the White House that there is “every indication” that Russia is prepared to attack Ukraine.
Adding to the concerns, Russia has reportedly expelled the deputy chief of the U.S. diplomatic mission in Moscow.
The latest developments come after Ukraine and pro-Russian separatists traded accusations of attacks in the eastern part of the country.
Russian state-controlled media claimed that Ukrainian forces had shelled territory held by the separatists, while Ukraine has accused Russian-backed rebels of attacking a village in the region.
Semiconductor stocks have shown a substantial move to the downside in morning trading, dragging the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index down by 3 percent.
Nvidia (NVDA) is leading the sector lower as concerns about flat profit margins and the graphics chipmaker’s exposure to the cryptocurrency market have overshadowed the company’s better than expected fourth quarter results and upbeat guidance.
Significant weakness has also emerged among airline stocks, as reflected by the 2.4 percent slump by the NYSE Arca Airline Index.
Banking stocks are also moving notably lower along with treasury yields, resulting in a 2.4 percent drop by the KBW Bank Index.
Housing, computer hardware, software and steel stocks are also seeing significant weakness, while gold stocks are among the few groups bucking the downtrend.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region turned in a mixed performance during trading on Thursday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index slid by 0.8 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose by 0.3 percent.
Meanwhile, the major European markets have come under pressure over the course of the session. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index tumbled by 1.3 percent, the German DAX Index and the French CAC 40 Index are down by 0.9 percent and 0.7 percent, respectively.
In the bond market, treasuries have moved significantly higher after ending the previous session roughly flat. Subsequently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is down by 8.4 basis points at 1.963 percent.
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