Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Shares Decline After Terror Attacks in Belgium

United States stock indexes closed mostly lower on Tuesday as shares of airlines, cruise companies and travel booking sites fell after the deadly bombings in Belgium.

News of the attacks, which killed more than 30 people, pulled the broader market lower for much of the morning. An early afternoon rally erased some of the losses, but the rebound didn’t hold.

Oil drilling companies also slumped after a downbeat forecast on drilling. Health care and technology stocks gained ground.

The slide ended a four-day market winning streak. Trading was relatively light, reflecting the approaching Easter holiday weekend. It also signaled that traders were not rattled by the potential market implications of the attack.

“What happens is investors and traders go in and start to bottom-fish on sectors that have sold off,” said Quincy Krosby, market strategist at Prudential Financial. “It flies in the face of the headlines and the human cost of these terrorist attacks, but the stock markets tend to turn around.”

The Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index dipped 1.80 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,049.80. The Nasdaq composite added 12.79 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,821.66.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 41.30 points, or 0.2 percent, to 17,582.57.

The major European stock markets declined early on, but ultimately closed higher. The DAX in Germany rose 0.4 percent, while the CAC-40 in France edged up 0.1 percent. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was up 0.1 percent. In Belgium, the BEL 20 index rose 0.2 percent.

In the United States, travel-related companies slumped. Royal Caribbean Cruises shed $2.24, or 2.9 percent, to $75.99, while Carnival lost $1.03, or 2.1 percent, to $48.75. The American Airlines Group fell 71 cents, or 1.6 percent, to $42.76. Delta Air Lines fell 73 cents, or 1.5 percent, to $49.39.

The travel website operators Priceline Group and Expedia also fell. Priceline slid $31.10, or 2.3 percent, to $1,319.41, and Expedia lost $1.96, or 1.8 percent, to $108.92.

“The only sector that appears to be truly suffering, naturally, is anything having to do with travel,” said J. J. Kinahan, chief strategist for TD Ameritrade.

Transocean also slumped on Tuesday. The oil drilling company shed 53 cents, or 5 percent, to $10 after its leaders said they did not expect drilling to increase anytime soon. The outlook weighed on other drillers. Ensco lost 32 cents, or 2.8 percent, to $11.01, and Helmerich & Payne slid $1.12, or 1.8 percent, to $59.86.

Other stocks fared better. Staples climbed 6.3 percent to close at $10.30. The company recovered some of its losses from a day earlier, when a court battle over the office supply chain’s proposed merger with Office Depot began.

Markets in Asia were mixed. In Japan, the Nikkei 225 climbed 1.9 percent, while the Hang Seng in Hong Kong shed early gains, sliding 0.1 percent. The South Korean Kospi gained 0.4 percent, while the S&P ASX in Australia 200 edged up 0.1 percent.

n energy trading, benchmark United States crude oil slipped 7 cents to settle at $41.45 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the benchmark for international oil, rose 25 cents, to $41.79 a barrel in London.

In other energy trading, wholesale gasoline added 4 cents, or 2.6 percent, to $1.50 a gallon, and heating oil rose a penny to $1.25 a gallon. Natural gas added 4 cents, or 1.9 percent, to $1.86 per 1,000 cubic feet.

Government bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 1.94 percent from 1.92 percent late Monday. The euro fell to $1.1216 from $1.1251, and the dollar rose to 112.33 yen from 111.86.

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Author: Red

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