As concerns over the coronavirus (also referred to as COVID-19) continue to dominate news headlines, cause volatility in the marketplace, and test investor confidence in securities markets, one thing remains unchanged - Leigh Baldwin & Co. and its commitment to assist clients through turbulent times. Along with the securities markets, we remain open and available to clients, ready to assist with any needs, questions, or concerns as they arise.
U.S. stocks open lower with investors spooked by worries about the future of General Motors and hopes for the Chinese stimulus fades. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 127 points to 6,748. GM is down 13%. Altria is up 5% on an upgrade. The S&P 500 shed 15 points to 697 while the Nasdaq Composite declined 22 points to 1,331. The financials keep heading lower. JP Morgan is down 4% on a debt downgrade. Bank of America and Wells Fargo's debt are on credit watch negative. US Bancorp is down 7% on a downgrade. Citigroup is inching closer to one dollar. The CFO of GE is out defending GE Capital indicating the financial division will be profitable in the first quarter. GE is actually higher. The retail sector reported dismal February sales. Gymboree is down 31% on earnings. Most retailers are lower except for Walmart which reported a 5% jump in sales. Everyone is going to Walmart. The commodities are lower. The techs are lower. Google and Yahoo are lower on downgrades. Adobe is a bright spot, up 10% on better than expected earnings. The company received three upgrades. After the first half an hour the averages were trying to rebound, but faltered. Barrons put out a positive piece on Aetna and Unitedhealth Group, but it isn't helping. After the first hour the averages were back at the lows of the day. Through the morning and into the afternoon, the averages kept moving lower. The Dow dropped 250 points. The Nasdaq declined 40 points. Citigroup dipped below a dollar a share. The rest of the financials are heading that way. GE held up for most of the day before falling in the red. The Wells Fargo Chairman bought a 100,000 shares, but it didn't seem to help. No bottom in sight. In the last hour, the averages kept moving lower. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 281 points, or 4.1%, to end at 6,594. The S&P 500 shed 30 points, or 4.3%, to end at 682, while the Nasdaq Composite slumped 54 points, or 4%, to 1,299.
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