Egypt unrest rattles Wall Street
Sat, 29 Jan 2011 05:55:46 GMT
The US stock market has sustained its biggest one-day loss in nearly six months as fears over growing turmoil in Egypt shakes Wall Street to the core.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 166 points by the closing bell on Friday, to 11,8244 -- a sharp decline compared to the 12,000 shares it had received two days prior to the outbreak of anti-government protests in Egypt, Reuters reported on Saturday.
The S&P 500 closed at 1,276, down 23 points, and the Nasdaq Composite closed at 2,687, down 68 points. The Dow's 166-point freefall was the biggest one-day drop since November.
The market drop ended the Dow's eight-week winning streak and pushed the S&P 500 below its 14-day moving average for the first time in two months.
The still-unfolding crisis in Egypt also wreaked havoc on average daily shares of Amazon.com and Ford, further aggravating the sense of uncertainty surrounding the US stock market.
Amazon.com shares slipped 7.2 percent to $171.14, a day after the online retailer recorded revenue below the consensus view.
Ford Motor Co (F.N) slumped 13.4 percent to $16.27 after a steep drop in quarterly profit. Rival automaker General Motors Co also lost 5.4 percent to $36.60.
Dow component Microsoft Corp also fell 3.9 percent to $27.75 a day after its profit dipped.
Meanwhile, experts believe the untoward political situations in Egypt, Tunisia and Yemen have forced investors to shelve their plans to buy and sell shares till after the weekend to see what news Monday will bring.
"I think the next two to three weeks, the crisis in Egypt and potentially across the Middle East, might be an excuse for a big selloff of 5 to 10 percent," said Keith Wirtz, president and chief investment officer at Fifth Third Asset Management in Cincinnati, Ohio.
The Egypt stock market also came under fierce assault as figures show the market's benchmark index slumped more than 10 percent on Thursday, extending this year's losses to 21 percent.
Egypt's main EGXEGX 30 index closed 10.52 percent lower on Thursday, at 5,646.5 points, which is its second sharpest drop in history.