December 6, 2013
Wall Street plunges as government shutdown draws near
US stocks fell sharply today as a last-minute deal to resolve a budget impasse in Washington appeared less likely, increasing the chances of a partial government shutdown.
Losses were broad, with all ten S&P 500 sectors lower on the day, led by energy and financials shares. About 80 percent of companies traded on both the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq fell.
Energy shares slumped 1.1 percent, dropping alongside a 1.5 percent fall in crude oil prices. Exxon Mobil fell 1.3 percent to $85.79 while Occidental Petroleum sank 1.6 percent to $92.93.
Financial shares were also lower, falling 1 percent. Goldman Sachs dropped 1.8 percent to $156.94 and Citigroup Inc was off 1.7 percent at $48.04.
The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 128.57 points, or 0.84 percent, at 15,129.67. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index fell 10.20 points, or 0.60 percent, at 1,681.55. The Nasdaq Composite Index slipped 10.12 points, or 0.27 percent, at 3,771.48.
European shares fell today, led lower by Italian shares after cabinet resignations in Rome risked triggering new elections while fiscal stalemate in the United States further soured the investor mood.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 was down 0.7 percent at 1,245.59 at 1038 GMT, with every major country index in negative territory and tracking global equity markets spooked by deadlock in the U.S. Congress as its budget deadline neared.