Stock market losses after Ukraine invasion moderate on economic news – 24/7 Wall St.


US markets opened sharply lower on Thursday morning as traders rushed into stocks and invested in safeties like bonds and gold. The Dow Jones Industrialists and the S&P 500 opened down about 2.5%, while the Nasdaq was down more than 3% at the opening bell.

In the first half hour of trading, losses had moderated: the Dow was down about 2.2%, the S&P 500 was down about 1.7% and the Nasdaq was down about 1.4%. %.

The weekly new jobless claims report said new claims fell 17,000 week-on-week to 232,000, below the consensus of 240,000. Continuing claims fell 112 000 to 1.476 million.

The second reading of fourth-quarter gross domestic product added 0.1% to the prior estimate of 6.9% growth to reach a level of growth of 7.0%. Inventory build-up accounted for 4.9% of the new growth estimate and new domestic product sales, excluding changes in private inventories, rose 2.0%.

Personal consumption expenditure rose 3.1%, slightly less than the previous estimate of 3.3% growth. Spending on goods rose 1.5%, significantly more than the prior estimate of 0.5%. Spending on services amounted to 3.9% against 4.7% initially estimated.

Among the market sectors, all 11 traded lower, led by Financials (3.3%), Materials (2.3%) and Consumer Discretionary (2.2%). Utilities (0.7%), real estate (1.1%) and energy (1.1%) posted the smallest losses.

Major early trade gainers included vaccine developer Moderna Inc. (NASDAQ:MRNA), which rose 8.8% to $147.80, in a 52-week range of $117.35 to $497.49 . When reporting higher and lower results in the morning, the company said it believed COVID-19 would move into an endemic phase this year, driving sales of Moderna’s vaccine higher in the second half.

Concert promoter Live Nation Entertainment Inc. (NYSE: LYV) rose 7.4% to $121.80 over a 52-week period from $74.01 to $127.75. The company reported results on Wednesday, including a more than 1,000% jump in revenue from the year-ago quarter.

Crude prices have also slipped since earlier in the morning. West Texas Intermediate rose about 6.4% to $98.02 a barrel from a high of just over $100 in the early hours of Thursday morning. Brent crude fell below $100 to trade at $99.97, after hitting $102 a barrel earlier.

The big winner among energy stocks remains Cheniere Energy Inc. (NYSEAMERICAN: LNG). The stock traded down 8.8% to $129.41 after hitting a new 52-week high of $139.40 earlier. Investors are eyeing Cheniere as a natural gas (LNG) supplier to Europe if the Russian gas supply is cut off.

Several oil producers also gave up gains made on Wednesday and earlier on Thursday. Reports that President Biden may release barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve dampened enthusiasm for oil stocks. Diamondback Energy Inc. (NASDAQ: FANG) traded around 0.7% lower at $128.66. Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) traded down 0.7% to $76.24 and Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) traded around 0.7% lower at $134.75. BP PLC (NYSE:BP) fell around 5.8% to $29.33

A few exceptions to this fall in stock prices are Whiting Petroleum Corp. (NYSE: WLL), which traded up about 4.9% at $66.92, and Continental Resources Inc. (NYSE: CLR), up 0.9% at $52.22.

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