Markets closed in the red on Tuesday after the manufacturing activity in the United States fell to its lowest level in the past three years. Further, a fresh round of tariffs was imposed by the United States and China on each other on Sep 1.
Such developments led to broad based losses for the markets. The three major benchmarks ended in the negative territory. Markets remained closed on Monday due to Labor Day.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average decreased 1.1%, to close at 26,118.02. The S&P 500 decreased 0.7% to close at 2,906.27. The tech-laden Nasdaq Composite Index closed at 7,874.15, losing 1.1%. The fear-gauge CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) decreased 3.2% to close at 18.38. Decliners outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by a 2.10-to-1 ratio. On Nasdaq, a 2.80-to-1 ratio favored declining issues.
How Did the Benchmarks Perform?
The Dow shed 285.3 points to close in the red. Shares of 3M Company MMM and Boeing BA fell 1.9% and 2.7%, respectively and weighed on the 30-stock index.
The S&P 500 fell 20.2 points to end in negative territory. Of the 11 major sectors of the S&P 500, eight ended in the red, with industrials leading the decliners. The Industrial Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLI) fell 1.4% on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, the Nasdaq slid 88.7 points to close in the red. Shares of Apple AAPL fell 1.5% and weighed on the Nasdaq. The stock carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
U.S. Manufacturing Activity Hits a 3-year Low
Per the latest report from the Institute of Supply Management (ISM), its manufacturing index decreased to 49.1% in August from 51.2% a month earlier. The reading not only came in below the consensus estimate of 51.3% but also fell to its lowest settlement since January 2016.
Any reading below the 50% level indicates a contraction in manufacturing activity. Further, new orders index and production index fell to 47.2% and 49.5%, respectively. Only nine of the 18 industries surveyed reported gains in the month.
Meanwhile, U.S. construction spending for July increased 0.1% but remained below the consensus estimate of 0.4%. Such dismal economic reports added to fears of an impending recession and led to broad-based losses for the markets.
Sino-U.S. Trade War Intensifies
The United States imposed 15% tariffs on Chinese goods worth $112 billion on Sep 1. In retaliation, China also imposed increased duties of between 5% and 10% on American products which include soybeans and crude oil.
However, this round of tariffs by China applies to 1,717 items of a total of 5,078 products imported from America. China also stated that it would impose additional tariffs on rest of the products from Dec 15.
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