Stock Market Today, Feb. 3: U.S. stocks closed down Monday after a rough trading session on the heels of a disappointing report on U.S. manufacturing and ahead of a busy week for economic indicators.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 326.05 points, or 2.1%, at 15,372.80 points; the S&P 500 Index closed down 2.28%, or 40.7 points, at 1,741.89; and the Nasdaq Composite Index closed down 2.61%, or 106.92 points at 3,996.96.
Stocks took a sharp dive after the Institute of Supply Management reported manufacturing activity dropped to an eight-month low of 51.3 in January, which was firmly below the analyst consensus of 56.0. Manufacturing data released today and overnight Sunday was disappointing in other regions as well, from China to Europe, triggering a sluggish market.
In financial stocks news today, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS) skidded about 3% into the red after positive morning trading. The bank said, together with VTB Capital, that it bought a 50% interest in the Russian Fitness Group for an undisclosed amount. It said it "substantially" boosted its minority stake in the gym chain, Bloomberg reported.
Energy futures were mixed today, with light sweet crude oil for March delivery trading down 1% at $96.54 per barrel and heating oil for March delivery trading up 0.04% at $3.01 per gallon. Natural gas was down 0.3% at $4.89 per million BTUs.
In other energy news, oil and gas giant Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) said its Chevron Energy Technology Company unit has formed a technology alliance with General Electric Co.'s (NYSE: GE) oil and gas division to create technologies for the oil and gas industry. CVX traded down about 1% today along with the broader stock market.
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Stock Market Today: Dow Not the Only Index to Plunge
Several major automakers traded heavily down today.
Among them, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. (NYSE: MTU) shares were down about 3% Monday after the banking company reported its Q3 earnings. It reported earnings of 54.84 yen, up over 37.00 yen a year prior in Q3.
Tata Motors Ltd (NYSE: TTM) shares were down about 4% today after it reported Jaguar Land Rover sales were up 31% from January 2013.
Also, Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) shares were down 3% after it reported January sales of 154,644 total vehicles, down 7% from a year ago, while retail sales of 113,721 vehicles are off 5%. Ford Mustang and Lincoln brand vehicles posted gains in the first month of 2014.
Sales of Mustang totaled 3,881 vehicles in January, which is an 8% increase over last year.
Healthcare Market News Today
Among healthcare news today, Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) was trading more than 1% higher after its randomized Phase 2 trial of palbociclib achieved its primary endpoint, showing a statistically significant improvement in progression-free survival for a breast cancer treatment.
And, Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. (NYSE: VRX) traded down about 2% after it said it has agreed to buy Precision Dermatology for $475 million in cash plus an additional $25 million payable upon achievement of a sales-based milestone.