Dow Jones Industrial Average Plummets on Tuesday

Mar 15, 2011, 09:19

The Dow Jones industrial average dropped more than 240 points in mid-morning trading as the U.S. markets plunged early Tuesday following a huge sell-off in Tokyo that sent the Nikkei 225 index down 10.55 percent.

On Tuesday in Japan, the sell-off escalated as concern over a 9-magnitude earthquake turned to fears of a nuclear catastrophe because of power plant damages.

Stocks on Wall Street are feeling the economic aftershocks. With most factory work suspended in Japan and international trade at a standstill, foreign firms are not immune from troubles in the world's third largest economy.

In midmorning trading in New York, the Dow Jones industrial average lost 2.07 percent, 248.36 points, to 11,744.80. The Standard & Poor's 500 index dropped 2.3 percent, 29.84, to 1,267.53. The Nasdaq composite index lost 2.4 percent, 64.78, to 2,636.19.

World stocks were already shaky due to government debt issues in Europe and civil unrest in Libya, which had sent oil prices sharply higher. Oil prices, however, tumbled Tuesday as demand from Japanese industries slackened sharply.

April delivery crude oil on the New York Mercantile Exchange shed $3.91 overnight or 3.9 percent to $97.28 per barrel.

The 10-year treasury note rose 30/32 to yield 3.255 percent.

The dollar was mixed. The euro fell to $1.3934 from Monday's $1.3999. Against the yen, the dollar fell to 80.98 yen from Monday's 81.69 yen.

The Nikkei 225 closed at 8,605.15, off 1,015.34 points.

Source: UPI