Published August 13, 2012
FOX Business: The Power to Prosper
Weak economic data from Japan set off fresh fears about the global economy, snapping the S&P's longest winning streak since 2010. However, tech shares buoyed the Nasdaq.
According to preliminary calculations, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 38.1 points, or 0.29%, to 13170, the S&P 500 dipped 1.7 points, or 0.12%, to 1404 and the Nasdaq Composite rose 1.7 points, or 0.05%, to 3023.
Energy and materials shares took the steepest selling on the day, while technology companies lifted the Nasdaq into the green. Out of the blue chips, Alcoa (AA) and Cisco (CSCO) were down the most on a percent basis, while American Express (AXP) and Disney (DIS) were up the most.
Trading desks were confronted with dramatically weaker-than-expected data from Japan on the day. The country's economy expanded at an annualized pace of 1.4% in the second quarter, considerably slower than the 2.3% economists had expected on average. This comes at a time when growth in the U.S. and China is slowing down and many European economies are contracting outright.
"The latest round of global data releases shows that European activity is the main drag on the global economy at present," Jose Wynne, an analyst at Barclays wrote in a note to clients. Wynne notes that the embattled eurozone periphery, with countries like Greece, is "contaminating" stronger players like Germany, Europe's biggest economy.
There are several important reports due out on the U.S. economy, the world's biggest, this week. Wall Street will get a fresh read on inflation at the consumer and producer levels, numerous regional manufacturing surveys, a look at consumer sentiment and data on the housing market. However, the slate is fairly clear on Monday.
On the corporate front, Google (GOOG) said it will slice 4,000 jobs at its Motorola Mobility division for which the search giant will take a roughly $275 million charge in the third quarter.
Pfizer's (PFE) Zoetis filed for an initial public offering of up to $100 million as the big health-care company looks shed non-core assets.
Oil shed early gains and slipped into the red. The benchmark contract traded in New York dipped 14 cents, or 0.15%, to $92.73 a barrel. Wholesale New York Harbor gasoline slumped 0.44% to $2.99 a gallon.
In metals, gold slid $10.20, or 0.63%, to $1,613 a troy ounce.
The Euro Stoxx 50 slipped 0.3% to 2416, the English FTSE 100 fell 0.26% to 5832 and the German DAX slumped 0.5% to 6910.
In Asia, the Japanese Nikkei 225 dipped 0.07% to 8885 and the Chinese Hang Seng slipped 0.27% to 20081.