U.S. Stocks End Lower As Oil Prices Log Largest Drop In a Month

By Joseph AdinolfiMarketWatch Pulse

U.S. stocks finished lower Wednesday as U.S.-traded crude-oil futures dived 4%, their biggest percentage-point drop since Feb. 23, weighing on energy and materials shares. The S&P 500 turned negative for the year, shedding 13.09 points, or 0.6%, to 2,036.71. Steep losses by Chesapeake Energy Corp. and Freeport-McMoRan Inc. led the index lower. The Dow industrials dropped 78.75 points, or 0.5%, to 17,503.68. The biggest loser on the blue-chip average was Nike Inc. , which tumbled after delivering a disappointing earnings report late Tuesday. The Nasdaq Composite shed 52.80 points, or 1.1%, to 4,768.01.

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