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For Dec. 8, 2015, here's the top stock market news and stocks to watch based on today's market moves…
How Did the Stock Market Do Today?
Dow Jones: 17,568.00; -162.51; -0.92%
S&P 500: 2,063.59; -13.48; -0.65%
Nasdaq: 5,098.24; -3.57; -0.07%
The Dow Jones Industrial Average today (Tuesday) lost another 162 points as oil prices continued to sell off and weakening Chinese data hinted the world is on the brink of another economic slowdown. Today's worst performer on the S&P 500 was Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), which slipped more than 2.8% as oil prices traded near seven-year lows. On Thursday, New Zealand is widely expected to cut its interest rates, a sign of the nation's weakening export business due to its exposure to China's stalling growth.
Top Stock Market News Today
- Stock Market News: Nine of 10 S&P sectors were negative today, with materials and industrial stocks falling the hardest. The lone bright spot was found in the healthcare sector as biotech stocks attempted to find gains. Shares of Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. (NYSE: VRX) were up 1.8%, while Biogen Inc. (Nasdaq: BIIB) gained more than 2.4%. The iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index ETF (Nasdaq: IBB) added roughly 2% on the day.
- Terrorism Ties: The political and financial media have been arguing nonstop over the last 48 hours after Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump announced a desire to stop all Muslim immigration into the United States until Congress and the political elite have a better understanding of the flaws in the screening system. Many critics – including fellow Republican candidates – have panned his plans, arguing it violates historical precedents and stirs Islamophobia in the country. Here's a breakdown of how Trump and other candidates plan to address terrorism in the United States.
- Energy in Focus: Oil prices hit their lowest levels since 2009 as concerns about oversupply and a rising dollar affected trader sentiment. January WTI prices fell 0.4% to hit $37.51 per barrel. Meanwhile, Brent oil crude – priced in London – slipped 1.2% to hit $40.26. According to Money Morning Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors, OPEC's excess production will only have a short-term effect on prices. Here's his outlook for crude oil prices and what investors must know about OPEC and its impact on U.S. producers
- On Tap Tomorrow: On Wednesday, oil prices will remain in focus again as the U.S. Energy Information Administration reports weekly crude inventory levels. Monthly reports on mortgage applications and wholesale trade will also be released. On the global front, pay attention to the New Zealand central bank's statement on interest rates and additional manufacturing data from China, which could offer further insight into the health of the global economy. Companies set to report quarterly earnings tomorrow include Lululemon Athletica Inc. (Nasdaq: LULU), Men's Wearhouse Inc. (NYSE: MW), Vera Bradley Inc. (Nasdaq: VRA), Korn/Ferry International (NYSE: KFY), Francesca's Holdings Corp. (Nasdaq: FRAN), and Layne Christensen Co. (Nasdaq: LAYN).
Stocks to Watch: OUTR, HRB, QCOM, CMG, NSC, CP
- Stocks to Watch No. 1, OUTR: Shares of Outerwall Inc. (Nasdaq: OUTR) slumped more than 24% after the company behind Redbox DVD rental kiosks slashed its full-year financial forecast below Wall Street's expectations.
- Stocks to Watch No. 2, HRB: Shares of H&R Block Inc. (NYSE: HRB) slumped nearly 7% after the company reported a wider loss than expected after the bell yesterday. The tax preparation company reported an EPS loss of $0.54 and a 4.6% decline in revenue. The firm cited a rising U.S. dollar for its international struggles.
- Stocks to Watch No. 3, QCOM: Shares of Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) slipped 5.6% on news European Union regulators have charged the chip manufacturer for violating antitrust rules by abusing its market power and paying customers to drive its competition out of business. The company could face a fine as large as $2.5 billion.
- Stocks to Watch No. 4, CMG: Shares of Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (NYSE: CMG) slipped another 1.8% on news an ongoing E. coli outbreak has affected 80 students in Boston and a nearby restaurant location has been closed indefinitely.
- Stocks to Watch No. 5, NSC: Shares of Norfolk Southern Corp. (NYSE: NSC) slipped more than 5.6% despite news the company has received a revised buyout bid from rival Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. (NYSE: CP). Members of Canadian Pacific said in a statement the new deal would be "financially more attractive and dramatically reduces the regulatory uncertainty" for NSC shareholders. Shares of CP were off 3.3% on the news.
What Investors Must Know This Week
- The Best Market Crash Insurance You Can Buy
- Grab Triple-Digit Gains from This "Stealth" Tech Star
- The Real Reason for China's Insatiable Gold Lust
About the Author
Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, and consultant with degrees from Northwestern, Johns Hopkins, Purdue, and Indiana University. He is a seasoned financial and political risk analyst, with a focus on stocks, hedge funds, private equity, blockchain, and housing policy. He has conducted risk assessment projects for clients in 27 countries, and consulted on policy and financial operations for some of the nation's largest financial institutions, including a $1.5 trillion credit fund, a $43 billion credit and auto loan giant, as well as two of the largest Wall Street banks by assets under management.
Garrett joined Money Map Press as an economist and researcher in 2011, specializing in alternative strategies with an emphasis on fundamental and technical analysis.