Stocks Extend Losses But End Off Lows


Stocks extended losses Wednesday, but ended off their session lows.

Worries over the eurozone put investors on edge. Spain’s economy slowed sharply in the third quarter and Spanish bond yields topped 6%. An unexpected drop in U.S. new-home sales didn’t help, either.

The Nasdaq again suffered the hardest hit, falling 0.8%. But it was off by 1.2% at Wednesday’s low. The S&P 500 fell 0.6% for its fifth straight loss. The Dow Jones industrial average slipped 0.3%. According to preliminary data, NYSE volume rose and Nasdaq trade fell. Group (WWWW) trimmed an 8% loss to 4%. Intraday, the stock fell more than 8% below an 18.40 buy point from a cup-with-handle base cleared Tuesday. Although volume was heavy on the breakout, the stock closed under the buy point, which is usually not a good sign.

Stratasys (SSYS) slumped 4% to a two-month low. The stock closed near a 54.47 trigger from a cup-with-handle base cleared July 18. Stratasys has now erased the 35% gain from that breakout. The maker of 3D printers was recently cut from the small-cap S&P 600 index, as its pending merger with peer Objet violates certain index criteria.

Elsewhere, homebuilders fell hard one news that new-home sales eased 0.3% in August to an annual rate of 373,000 units. Economists expected a slight rise to 380,000 units. Meritage Homes (MTH) swooned 7% and Ryland Group (RYL) lost 6%.

Leaders up in volume were few, but Michael Kors (KORS) gained nearly 1% as it bounced back from two days of heavy selling. On Tuesday, the company priced a secondary offering by existing holders of 23 million shares at a discount to Monday’s close. Selling shareholders include founder Michael Kors and CEO John Idol.

Data on the third-quarter GDP, initial jobless claims, durable goods and pending-home sales will be out Thursday.


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