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Wall Street closes with heavy losses

A board shows the value of the Dow Jones industrial average at the end of the trading day at the New York Stock Exchange in New York, New York, USA, on 17 December 2018. The Dow closed the day down over 500 points after falling over 600 earlier. EPA-EFE/JUSTIN LANE

A board shows the value of the Dow Jones industrial average at the end of the trading day at the New York Stock Exchange in New York, New York, USA, on 17 December 2018. The Dow closed the day down over 500 points after falling over 600 earlier. EPA-EFE/JUSTIN LANE

EFE

Wall Street closed on Monday with heavy losses as the Dow Jones Industrial Average , its main indicator, was down 2.11 percent, or more than 500 points, a decline that leads the stock deeper into correction territory for fears of a further rise in interest rates and a slowdown in economic growth.

At the end of the session, the Dow Jones retreated exactly 507.53 points to 23,592.98, its lowest level since May and remained in the correction zone, a term used when an index loses at least 10 percent compared to a recent maximum.

Meanwhile, the S&P 500 fell 2.08 percent or 54.01 points, to 2,545.94 and the Nasdaq Composite Index fell 2.27 percent or 156.93 points to 6,753.73.

All sectors ended the day in red, although corporate losses in the non-essential goods (-2.82 percent), essential goods (-2.28 percent), energy (-1.86 percent) and the financial (-0.97 percent) sectors stood out for their losses.

Stocks collapsed on Monday and the S&P 500 index reached a new low for this year, losing 4 percent in 2018 amid growing concerns over the Federal Reserve’s plan to raise interest rates again.

The Fed is expected to increase its benchmark lending rate on Wednesday in what would be its fourth increase in 2018.

The Dow and the S&P 500 indexes, already in correction zone, are on track for their worst performance since the Great Depression of 1931, according to Wall Street analysts.

The thirty stocks of the Dow Jones entered the red zone and the biggest decline was for American Express, which fell 4.28 percent, followed by Procter & Gamble (-4.03 percent), Nike (-3.63 percent), Cisco (-3.54 percent) and Walgreens Boots Alliance (-3.20 percent).

In other markets, Texas oil fell to $49.23 a barrel and, at the close of the session on Wall Street, gold rose to $1,250 an ounce, the return on the 10-year Treasury bond fell to 2.85 percent while the dollar lost ground against the euro, which was trading at 1.1345.


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