Monday, July 22, 2024

Stock market today: Wall Street holds steady while crude oil prices tumble

by Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street is holding relatively steady in early trading. The S&P 500 was up 0.2% early Monday, coming off its first losing week in the last 10. The Dow was off 145 points, and the Nasdaq composite was up 0.5%. Boeing slumped 9% after one of its jets suffered an inflight blowout over Oregon this past weekend. Stocks of oil-and-gas companies were also particularly weak after crude prices tumbled roughly 4%. Delta Air Lines and JPMorgan Chase report their latest results later in the week. The government reports figures on inflation on Thursday.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP’s earlier story follows below.

Wall Street pointed lower before the opening bell Monday following its worst week since Halloween.

Futures for the S&P 500 were unchanged, while futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.4%.

Shares in Boeing, Alaska Air Group and Spirit AeroSystems all tumbled as federal regulators grounded some Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft after an unused exit door opening on an Alaska Airlines flight blew out after takeoff over Oregon this weekend. Investigators are focused on a door plug made by Spirit AeroSystems.

Spirit AeroSystems, which builds the fuselage for Boeing’s 737 Max, slid more than 14% in premarket trading, while Boeing fell 7.6% and Alaska Air Group lost 5.1%.

Hours after the incident, the FAA ordered the grounding of 171 of the 218 Max 9s in operation, including all those used by Alaska Airlines and United Airlines, until they can be inspected.

Alaska Airlines, which has 65 Max 9s, and United, with 79, are the only U.S. airlines to fly that particular model of Boeing’s 737.

Early Monday, 20% of the Alaska’s flights were cancelled — 139 in all — according to the flight tracking site FlightAware.

United Airlines, the world’s biggest operator of Max 9s, grounded its entire fleet of Max 9s and is seeking to “clarify the inspection process and requirements for returning” them to service. The airline had cancelled 204 flights early Monday, or 7% of all planned departures, according to FlightAware.

United Shares slipped 1.3%.

It’s the latest episode in the troubled history of Boeing’s Max lineup of jets. Two Max 8 jets crashed in 2018 and 2019, killing 346 people. All Max 8 and Max 9 planes were grounded worldwide for nearly two years until Boeing made changes to an automated flight control system implicated in the crashes.

The Max has been plagued by other issues, including manufacturing flaws, some of which are related to parts made by Spirit AeroSystems.

In Europe at midday, Germany’s DAX gained 0.2%, while the CAC 40 in Paris and Britain’s FTSE 100 were flat.

In Asian trading, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng sank 1.9% to 16,179.00, led by losses for property and technology shares, which dropped 3.3%. The Shanghai Composite index slipped 1.4% to 2,887.54.

Property shares were heavily sold following news that major Chinese shadow bank Zhongzhi Enterprise Group, a major lender to real estate developers, filed for bankruptcy in Beijing. Meanwhile, troubled developer China Evergrande’s electric vehicle company said its vice chairman had been detained on suspicion of unspecified “crimes.”

China announced sanctions Sunday against five American defense-related companies in response to U.S. arms sales to Taiwan and U.S sanctions on Chinese companies and individuals. The announcement came ahead of a presidential election in Taiwan that is centered around the self-ruled island’s relationship with China, which claims it as its own territory.

In South Korea, the Kospi shed 0.4%, to 2,567.82, and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.5% to 7,451.50. Taiwan’s Taiex gained 0.3%, while the SET in Bangkok was 0.6% lower.

Markets in Japan were closed for a holiday.

Investors are waiting for inflation reports later this week from Japan, the U.S. and China.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury reached 4.04% early Monday.

Oil prices fell after Saudi Arabia on Sunday cut oil prices to Asian markets to their lowest level in 27 months.

U.S. benchmark crude oil tumbled $2.63 to $71.88 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, the international standard, lost $2.53 to $76.23 per barrel.

The U.S. dollar fell to 144.47 Japanese yen from 144.59 yen. The euro rose to $1.0949 from $1.0941 late Friday.

Friday on Wall Street, the S&P 500 rose 0.2%, capping its first losing week in the last 10. It roared into 2024 on hopes that inflation and the overall economy are cooling enough for the Federal Reserve to cut interest rates sharply through the year.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.1% and the Nasdaq composite also added 0.1%.

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