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US stocks crumble, with Dow falling more than 300 points after December retail sales badly miss estimates

Trader Leon Montana works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange stocks

AP Photo/Richard Drew

  • The sell-off in US stocks continued on Friday after December retail sales badly missed estimates.
  • US retail sales dropped 1.9% in December from the prior month, while economists expected a drop of only 0.1%.
  • The decline sales came amid the Omicron virus surge, rising inflation, and an earlier-than-usual holiday shopping season.
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The sell-off in US stocks continued on Friday, with the Dow Jones falling more than 300 points after December retail sales badly missed estimates.

US retail sales dropped 1.9% in December from the prior month, well below economists’ expectations for a decline of only 0.1%. The weak results follow November’s print of a 0.2% gain in sales. The weak sales last month came amid the Omicron virus surge, rising inflation, and an earlier-than-usual holiday shopping season due to logistical concerns.

Here’s where US indexes stood shortly after the 9:30 a.m. ET open on Friday:

  • S&P 500: 4,628.94, down 0.65%
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average: 35,754.50, down 0.99% (359.12 points)
  • Nasdaq Composite: 14,739.62, down 0.45%

Banks kicked off earnings season on Friday, with JPMorgan, Citigroup, and Wells Fargo reporting. But the results weren’t strong enough to stem a decline in their stocks on Friday.

The Supreme Court’s decision to strike down President Biden’s vaccine mandate for private employers led to a continued decline in COVID-19 vaccine makers Moderna and Novavax.

The bad news keeps rolling in for Peloton, which fell 4% on Friday after it was kicked out of the Nasdaq 100 Index just one year after its inclusion. The connected-fitness company has seen its stock fall 81% from its record high.

Dogecoin prices surged about 11% on Friday after Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the electric vehicle manufacturer would accept the meme-inspired cryptocurrency as a form of payment for certain merchandise.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil rose as much as 0.61% to $82.62 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, jumped as much as 0.76% to $85.11 per barrel.

Gold rose as much as 0.23% to $1,825.50 per ounce. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose 3 basis points to 1.74%.

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