Stock prices finished off their worst levels of Monday trading, benefiting from modest bottom-fishing this afternoon that followed steep declines earlier today when sluggish Chinese trade data and a warning from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development turned investor attention back to global growth.
Utility stocks were the biggest beneficiary of the late-day buying, reversing their declines from the early selloff to close about 0.5% higher as a group. All nine of the other industry sectors finished underwater, with shares of health care and consumer companies also climbing off their worst levels of today’s session, leaving energy and financial stock in deep holes by the closing bell.
Customs data out of China Sunday showed an 18.8% drop in exports during October compared with the year-ago period while exports fell 6.9% as global demand slumped. The OECD also trimmed its 2015 global growth forecast to 2.9% from its prior outlook expecting a 3.0% rise, citing a “deeply concerning” slowdown in global trade, particularly in emerging markets. It also cut its 2016 outlook to 3.3%, down from previous forecasts expecting 3.6% growth.
The U.S. dollar also continued to rise against most foreign currencies as investors increasingly expect the Federal Reserve to raise U.S. interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade next month, influencing growth prospects for U.S. goods.
Crude oil for December delivery was down 36 cents at $43.87 per barrel while December natural gas futures were 8 cents lower at $2.29 per 1 million BTU. December gold edged $3.10 higher to $1,087.70 per ounce while December copper declined 1 cent to $2.23 per pound.
Here’s where the U.S. markets stood at the end-of-day:
Dow Jones Industrial Average down 179.85 (-1.00%) to 17,730.48
S&P 500 down 20.62 (-0.98%) to 2,078.58
Nasdaq Composite Index down 51.82 (-1.01%) to 5,095.30
Hang Seng Index down 0.61%
Shanghai China Composite Index up 1.58%
FTSE 100 Index down 0.92%
(+) STRL, Posts surprise Q2 profit of $0.09 per share, topping two-analyst estimate expecting $0.09 per share net loss. Names former Chicago Bridge & Iron Chief Financial Officer to be its new CFO, effective today.
(+) PCL, Agrees to Weyerhaeuser ( WY ) merger offer in an all-stock deal followed by $2.5 bln stock buyback by WY of PCL shares. Deal expected to increase funds available for per-share distributions during first year after closing.
(+) LOXO, Said LOXO-101 experimental cancer treatment demonstrated promising clinical activity and safety during Phase I testing, adding all six patients who began the study are still alive, with three showing some symptom improvement.
(-) EVEP, Warns distributable cash flow likely will fall below levels needed to maintain $0.50 per share quarterly distribution. Also reports 54.7% drop in Q3 revenue from last year to $38.3 mln, missing the $52.08 mln consensus.
(-) FSTR, Adjusted Q3 EPS of $0.67 is $0.06 per share smaller than two-analyst estimate. Revenue rises 4.9% over year-ago levels to $176.1 mln, also lagging the $193.28 mln consensus view.
(-) MNK, H.P. Acthar gel misses primary endpoint, with corticotropin injection failing to produce a complete reduction in swollen joints and skin in Lupus patients with no new organ system disease. Meets secondary efficiency endpoints vs. placebo.
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