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  • Dow Jones Industrial Average down 156.06 (-1.24%) to 12,442.49
  • S&P 500 down 19.94 (-1.51%) to 1,304.86
  • Nasdaq Composite Index down 60.35 (-2.10%) to 2,813.69

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

  • Nikkei 225 up 0.86%
  • Hang Seng Index down 0.31%
  • Shanghai China Composite Index up 1.39%
  • FTSE 100 down 1.13%

U.S. stocks slid on Thursday, accelerating their losses as the closing bell approached after Fitch cut Greece's sovereign rating to 'CCC," citing the country's possible exit from the eurozone as a reason to downgrade.

Earlier, stocks trended negative following a disappointing gauge of manufacturing in the Philadelphia region. Manufacturing in the mid-Atlantic Coast region sank to a -5.8 reading this month from a 8.5 score in April, the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank reported. Experts polled by MarketWatch were expecting an increase to 10.0 this month as the index posted its first negative reading since last September.

Also contributing to the negative tone was the Conference Board's report that its index of leading indicators fell 0.1% in April, compared with Wall Street expectations for a 0.1% gain.

Reports that Moody's Investors' Service is ready to downgrade the debt ratings of several Spanish banks offset more positive news on U.S. employment trends. The Labor Department reported first-time applications for unemployment assistance held steady at 370,000 last week. The average of new claims over the past four weeks slid by 4,750 to 375,000, its lowest level in more than a month.

In company news, Enbridge Inc. (NYSE:ENB), and its partner Enterprise Products Partners L.P. (NYSE:EPD) said modifications to the Seaway crude oil pipeline allowing it to transport crude oil from Cushing, Oklahoma, to the U.S. Gulf Coast have been completed.

MEMC Electronic Materials, Inc. (WFR) shares slid to a 52-week low after the company said it will transition the Chief Financial Officer role to Brian Wuebbels from the company's current CFO, Mark Murphy.

Commodities are mixed. Crude oil futures suffered their fifth straight loss, ending at their worst since early November. Crude for June delivery retreated 25 cents, or 0.3%, to $92.56 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Natural gas ended 0.9% lower after a weekly government inventories report showed an increase above expectations. The June contract fell 2 cents to settle at $2.59 per million British thermal units. Gold finally rose, with gold for June delivery climbing $38.30, or 2.5%, to settle at $1,574.90 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. Yesterday, gold finished at a 10-month low.

UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) VELT, In-Line FY Guidance

(+) SHLD,Q1 Beat; Plans Sears Canada Spin-Off

(+) MEG, Berkshire Hathaway buys most of firm's newspaper assets

(+) SPWR, Apple will use SPWR's Solar Panels: Reuters

(+) FSLR, U.S. Sets Preliminary Duties on Chinese Solar Imports

(+) BKS, Shareholder to Distribute Stake, Lower Nook Price with eBay

DOWNSIDE MOVERS

(-) ROSG, Direct Offering Pact

(-) DNDN, Confirms SEC Probe

(-) LTD, Sets Guidance Mostly Below Street Estimates

(-) DLTR, Beats on Q1, Sets Mixed Guidance

(-) DANG, Posts Narrower Q1 Loss Vs. Estimates, Misses on Revs

(-) RRGB, Mixed Q1 Results

Source: No Shaking Off Euro Jitters