Stock indexes shift focus back to Europe

Tuesday's Economic Reports

The morning's economic data releases had very little impact upon the session's price action on Tuesday. The S&P/Case-Shiller 20-City Housing Price Index fell 3.8% in August, which was in line with expectations. In July it had fallen 4.1%. Later, the Consumer Confidence Index came in lower at 39.8, which was its worst reading in over two years and less than the anticipated reading of 46.0.

S&P 500 (Figure 2)

Index Wrap-up

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ($DJI) ended the day on Tuesday with a loss of 207.00 points, or 1.74%, and closed at 11,706.62. Out of the Dow's thirty index components, only Cisco Systems (CSCO) (+0.46%) and Intel (INTC (+0.16%) posted a gain. The top decliners were 3M (MMM) (-6.25%), Alcoa (AA) (-4.16%), Bank of America (BAC) (-3.87%), and Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) (-3.73%). 3M missed earnings estimates and weighed heavily on the Dow.

The S&P 500 ($SPX) finished the session with a loss of 25.14 points, or 2.00%, and closed at 1,229.05. None of the index's industry groups managed to end the session with a gain. Top percentage performers in the index were Quest Diagnostics Inc. (DGX) (+10.83%), Sherwin Williams Co. (SHW) (+1.92%), and Masco Corp. (MAS) (+1.71%). The weakest industry groups were the financials (-3.1%) and materials (-2.5%). The weakest percentage performer was Netflix (NFLX) with a loss of 34.90% after announcing on Monday that it lost 800,000 subscribers in the U.S. during its last quarter. It was followed by another strong decliner: First Solar (FSLR), which fell 25.33% (most of it in the afternoon) after it announced that its CEO, Rob Gillette, is leaving the company. AK Steel Holding Corp. (AKS) (-13.64%) and SLM Corp. (SLM) were the other double digit percentage losers.

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