More Worries About Greece Pummel Stocks

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 |  Includes: DIA, QQQ, SPY
by: Midnight Trader
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average down 125.25 (-0.98%) to 12,695.35
  • S&P 500 down 15.04 (-1.11%) to 1,338.35
  • Nasdaq Composite down 31.24 (-1.06%) to 2,902.58

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

  • Nikkei 225 up 0.23%
  • Hang Seng Index down 1.15%
  • Shanghai China Composite Index down 0.60%
  • FTSE 100 down 1.97%

Stocks ended the first trading session of the week lower as investors grew concerned over Greece's ongoing political problems and the possibility that the country will be pushed out of the eurozone. There were no economic reports released today in the U.S., keeping traders' full attention on eurozone issues.

The leader of Greece's left-wing Syriza Party this weekend rejected offers to join a coalition government to help implement an austerity plan that the party and its supporters oppose. If no government can be formed, new elections are likely to be held in June, according to reports.

Concerns over a possible eurozone exit by Greece pushed Spanish 10-year bonds yields to the highest level since last December as Spain increased reserve requirements for banks to cover potentially bad real estate loans. Also, German Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Party was rebuffed in regional elections in the North Rhine-Westphalia state.

In company news, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) shares slipped, still reeling from last week's unexpected $2 billion loss. Moody's Investors Service late this morning placed the bank's credit rating on review for a possible downgrade. Also today, Ina Drew, the head of JPM's Chief Investment Office, agreed to step down amid Street talk the entire London trading office staff also will be dismissed.

Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) shares staged an aggressive rally today ahead of the company's upcoming earnings release. GRPN is scheduled to release earnings in today's after hours session.

Crude for June delivery plunged 1.4%, to end the day at $94.78 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest settlement for a most active contract since mid-December. Gold also fell to a multi-month low. Gold for June delivery fell 5%, to settle at $1,561 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, the contract's lowest since Dec. 29.

UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) CHK, Receives $3 billion loan from Goldman Sachs and Jefferies.

(+) AVP, Board considering potential buy-out offer by Coty.

(+) VTUS, Positive Phase III trial results for prospective colon treatment.

(+) TIII, Agreed to $33.1 million buyout by Kelta Inc.

(+) GOLF, Accepting $97.2 million going-private transaction by Golf Town.

(+) YHOO, CEO stepping down amid resume-padding accusations.

(+) SKUL, Officer Purchases Shares.

DOWNSIDE MOVERS

(-) ACOM, NBC cancels company-sponsored show.

(-) CEL, Rival starting service tomorrow; shares set new 52-week low.

(-) NOK, Downgraded to Sell from Hold at Societe Generale.

(-) SYMC, Downgraded by Goldman Sachs to Sell from Neutral.