The Dow Jones Industrial Average Is Falling on Record Yield Curve Inversion

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is down Wednesday morning after the yield curve inverted the most since 2007, stoking recession fears. More on this below.

Here are the numbers from Tuesday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:

Index Previous Close Point Change Percentage Change
Dow Jones 25,777.90 -120.93 -0.47
S&P 500 2,869.16 -9.22 -0.32
Nasdaq 7,826.95 -26.79 -0.34

Now, here's a closer look at today's Money Morning insight, the most important market events, and stocks to watch.

The Top Stock Market Stories for Wednesday

  • The bond market is looking uglier by the day. For the first time in 10 years, S&P stock dividends are averaging a higher yield than the 30-year Treasury bond. The last time the markets witnessed this sort of inversion came in March 2009, at the height of the global economic crisis. Concerns about an economic downturn have pressed investors into safe-haven assets like bonds and gold. Gold prices topped $1,550 on Tuesday, while silver prices are now above $18.
  • Oil prices ticked slightly higher in pre-market hours as investors prepare for an update from the Energy Information Administration. Analysts anticipate that the U.S. energy agency will report a build in U.S. inventories as the market looks oversupplied. With that in mind, analysts are tracking Tropical Storm Dorian. The storm may reach Hurricane status when it reaches Puerto Rico on Wednesday. Its current path shows it hitting Florida on Saturday or Sunday.

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  • Don't forget that there's another major economic problem on the horizon. Brexit is on the verge of wreaking havoc on the European economy in a matter of weeks. The British pound slumped this morning after Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he plans to schedule the reopening of Parliament on Oct. 14. This decision would effectively make it nearly impossible for MPs to strike a deal by the Brexit deadline on Oct. 31. Johnson claims he wants to reach a new departure deal with the European Union. However, critics claim he is pressing the British economy into the dark with a Hard Brexit.

Stocks to Watch Today: TIF, PM, MO, BP

  • Shares of BP Plc. (NYSE: BP) received a boost after the energy giant announced plans to sell its Alaskan business to Hilcorp Energy for $5.6 billion. This ends six decades of BP operations in the 49th state. The deal is still subject to regulatory approval, but sets BP off on a new course after years of environmental debates.
  • Shares of Tiffany & Co. (NYSE: TIF) are in focus as the jeweler reports earnings before the bell Tuesday. Tiffany stock added 1.9% after the firm topped Wall Street profit expectations thanks to strong sales in China. However, revenue and same-store sales did fall. Analysts appeared more content that the jewelry retailer had maintained its full-year sales and financial outlook for the year.
  • In deal news, markets are still reacting to the announcement that Phillip Morris International Inc. (NYSE: PM) plans to merge with Altria Group Inc. (NYSE: MO) as both companies place big bets on the future of vaping. This deal actually represents a remarriage of the two companies, which split years ago after their U.S. operations were tied up in lawsuits. It represents the largest U.S. deal in the markets since AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) combined with Time Warner.
  • Look for earnings reports from Box Inc. (NYSE: BOX), Nutanix Inc. (NASDAQ: NTNX), Okta Inc. (NASDAQ: OKTA), Five Below Inc. (NASDAQ: FIVE), Williams-Sonoma Inc. (NYSE: WSM), Safe Bulkers (NYSE: SB), H&R Block Inc. (NYSE: HRB), and Guess? Inc. (NYSE: GES).

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