Closing Bell - Bloodbath: LIVE MARKETS BLOG

 | Feb 08, 2018 | 4:06 PM EST
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Closing Bell

The Dow fell more than 1,000 points for the second time this week as markets endured another bloodbath Thursday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 4.15%, or 1,033 points, to 23,861 while the Nasdaq declined 3.9%, or 275 points, to 6,777 and the S&P 500 dropped 3.75%, or 100 points to 2,581.

Dow, Nasdaq and S&P All Drop More Than 1%

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.6%, or 396 points, to 24,502 while the Nasdaq declined 1.4%, or 96 points, to 6,957 and the S&P 500 dropped 1.2%, or 32 points to 2,651.

Mortgage Rates Top 52-Week High Thursday

30-year fixed mortgage rates rose for the fifth consecutive week last week to 4.32%, according to data released by Freddie Mac. Last week the rate was 4.22% and the week before it was 4.17%. 

The rate has risen about 40 basis points since the start of the year, bringing it to a high that it hasn't seen since December 2016. 

The 15-year fixed rate rose tp 3.77% from 3.68% a week ago and 3.39% a year ago. 

Dow Falls 400 Points, Deepening Selloff

Markets continued to ignore premarket futures trading Thursday, with all three indices spending the entire day in the red.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.6%, or nearly 400 points, to 24,500 while the Nasdaq declined 1.48%, or 104 points, to 6,946 and the S&P 500 dropped 1.3%, or 34 points to 2,647. 

Hackers Have Easy Access to Your Smart TV

Smart TVs made by the top-five U.S. brands are particularly susceptible to hacking, according to an analysis by Consumer Reports. All can track what consumers watch and two of the brands failed basic security tests performed by CR. 

Glenn Derene, Consumer Reports' senior director of content, said that the most disturbing part of their review was the relative simplicity of the vulnerabilities. 

Smart TVs that were connected to the same wifi as say a users' mobile phone were able to be penetrated through malware attacks on the phone. 

Google Face Class Action Suit Over Pixel Phones

Plaintiffs filed a class action lawsuit this week accusing Google (GOOGL) of selling Pixel phones that it knows are defective, according to Fast Company

While the exact defect was not reported by Fast Company the publication did note that Google admitted that the phone's microphone had issues in 2017. 

Google's current crop of Pixel 2 phones have also received customer complaints, even though the phone has been a hit with critics, leading the company to extend its standard warranties to two years. 

Tyson to Offer Some Employees One-Time Bonuses Thanks to Tax Reform

Tyson Foods (TSN) announced that it will spend more than $100 million to offer some employees one-time cash bonuses now that their corporate tax rate has been cut by the GOP tax reform bill. 

During its latest earnings release, the company said that it recorded a $790 million benefit from the tax bill.

In spite of the one-time bonus, the company plans to go ahead with its plan to cut 600 positions as part of its restructuring efforts. Tyson expects the plan to result in $218 million in pretax charges. 

U.S. Jobless Benefits Declined to Nearly 45-Year Low Last Week

Initial claims for jobless benefits int he U.S. fell by 9,000 to a seasonally adjusted 221,000 for the week ending February 3. 

The labor market is currently near full employment with the jobless rate at a 17-year low of 4.1%. 

While a tightening job market may seem like a good thing on the surface, economists always worry that full employment means demands for wage growth. Additionally, the stronger the economy the greater the chance the Federal Reserve raises interest rates. 

Naked Passenger Forces Alaska Airlines U-Turn

A man on an Alaska Airlines (ALK) flight from Seattle to Alaska went to the bathroom, took off all of his clothes and refused to listen to reason, forcing the airplane to head back to Seattle where the FBI and airport police detained him. 

It was unclear whether the man was arrested or not. 

"Alaska Airlines flight 146 from Anchorage to Seattle returned to Anchorage due to a passenger not following flight attendant's instructions. While no emergency was declared, the decision was made to return to Anchorage," an airport spokesperson said, according to Fox News.

Bank of England Sees Higher Interest Rates Sooner

The Bank of England says that the time for low-interest rates is ending and the central bank would tighten its monetary policy earlier and "by a somewhat greater extent" than it forecast in its last report in November. 

The BOE noted that the market expects interest rates to reach 1.2% by 2021, which could mean three rate hikes over that period. 

The pound sterling rose against the dollar on the news, climbing to 1.4000 against the dollar after closing trading yesterday at 1.388. 


U.S. futures were trading in the green, momentarily, Thursday morning after also spending some time in negative territory. 

S&P 500 futures were rising 0.05%, Nasdaq futures were climbing 0.31% and Dow Jones futures were gaining 0.06% ahead of the opening bell. 

In Asia, markets were mixed with the Nikkei and Hang Seng rising 1.13% and 0.42% respectively. 

In Europe, markets were dropping heavily with the DAX leading the way lower falling 1.1% while the CAC 40 was declining 0.74% and the FTSE 100 was falling 0.95%. 

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