S&P 500, Dow sink to late-September lows on virus woes

In this news, we discuss the S&P 500, Dow sink to late-September lows on virus woes.

(Reuters) – The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones hit their lowest levels since late September on Wednesday, as a surge in coronavirus cases in the United States and Europe dashed hopes for a rapid global economic recovery.

Shares of hotels, airlines and other businesses susceptible to COVID-19-related brakes fell, Wynn Resorts WYNN.O down 2% and the S&P 1,500 airline index .SPCOMAIR fell 3%. The .SPNY energy index lost around 3% as oil prices fell on fears of lower demand for fuel. [O/R]

New cases and hospitalizations have set records in the US Midwest, while concerns over a nationwide lockdown in France and tighter restrictions in Germany have sapped investor appetite for risk. [MKTS/GLOB]

“Whether you call this a continuation of the pandemic or a third wave of discovery of new cases, that’s the biggest concern,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities in New York City.

“Unless and until we get through this pandemic, it’s hard for investors to imagine better economic times.”

A spiraling pandemic and failure to reach agreement on a new round of US fiscal stimulus ahead of the Nov. 3 election put the blue chip Dow Jones and the benchmark S&P 500 on track to erase their gains of October.

With just six days before the election, Wall Street’s .VIX fear gauge has reached its highest level since July 15, also due to fears that a winner will not be declared on the night of November 3 due to a delay in counting the enormous volume of mail. – in the ballot papers.

Democratic challenger Biden leads President Donald Trump nationally by 10 percentage points, according to the Reuters / Ipsos poll, but competition is tighter in the swing states, which will decide the winner.

“The uncertainty of not knowing which direction we are heading causes investors to step aside and wait for the election results,” Hogan said.

The losses were widespread, with tech stocks .SPLRCT weighing the most.

Great Tech companies – Apple AAPL.O, Alphabet GOOGL.O, Amazon AMZN.O and Facebook FB.O – which is due to release results on Thursday, fell between 2.8% and 4.8%, weighing the most on the S&P 500. At 10:52 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI fell 841, 00 points, or 3.06% to 26,622.19, the S&P 500 .SPX loses 100.22 points, or 2.95% to 3290.61 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC loses 348.70 points, or 3.05 % at 11,082.65.

Of the 170 S&P 500 companies that have released third quarter results so far, about 84% have beaten expectations, according to data from Refinitiv. Profit on average is expected to fall 16.4% from the previous year.

Microsoft Corp’s MSFT.O quarterly results exceeded analysts’ targets, benefiting from a pandemic shift to work from home and e-learning. Its shares, however, have fallen about 4% after rising 35% so far this year.

Boeing BA.N fell 3.8% after reporting its fourth consecutive quarterly loss.

General Electric Co GE.N was in a positive position, jumping 8% after posting surprise quarterly profit and positive cash flow thanks to cost cuts and improved business in energy and renewables .

The declining issues outnumbered the proponents for a 14-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 6.28-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P Index recorded no new 52-week highs and seven new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded seven new highs and 106 new lows.

Report by Medha Singh and Shivani Kumaresan in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva and Arun Koyyur

Original © Thomson Reuters

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