U.S. stocks opened sharply lower on Wednesday, erasing much of the prior day's gains, after economic data showed dampening sentiment and weaker manufacturing numbers while the inflation data ran hotter than expected. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 118 points to 11,957. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index dropped 11 points to 1,276. The Nasdaq Composite Index declined 27 points to 2,651. Nothing looks particularly good this morning. The financials are lower after another one day rally. Barclays is down 2% on comments they will expect tougher regulatory standards. Ameriprise announced a $2 billion share buyback, but it isn't helping. One of the few financials trading up is Discover on better than expected credit card data. The tech sector is lower on no news. Google outbid Microsoft for Nortel patents, but it isn't helping. Dolby is suing Research in Motion, yet RIM is one of the few techs trading higher. Go figure. The Internet radio company, Pandora came public this morning, trading up 30%. In the retail space JC Penney is down after jumping 16% yesterday. Target is lower after expanding their recall on child booster seats. Home Depot and Lowes are down thanks to downgrades. The commodities are lower, but not as much as the rest of the market. Rare Earth stocks are actually trading higher. Rare Element is up 11% after expanding their production potential. After the first hour the averages remained weak, but off the lows. Through the morning the averages remained weak with no real buyers showing up. Heading into the lunch hour the selling reaccelerated to new lows of the day. The Dow dropped 150 points as the Greek Prime Minister announced he would resign for the unity of the government. The US dollar is also rallying on this news as the Euro gets hit. Through the afternoon averages remained weak with the Dow falling 200 points. The Nasdaq declined 40 points. No buyers today. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 178 points, or 1.5%, to 11,897. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index dropped 22 points, or 1.7%, to 1,265. The Nasdaq Composite Index fell 47 points, or 1.8%, to 2,631.
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