Dow Jones Dives 800 Points, Techs Sell Off – Investor's Business Daily

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Stocks tumbled midday as the Dow Jones Industrial Average dived over 800 points and tech stocks slammed the Nasdaq.

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The Nasdaq plunged 5.1%, the S&P 500 sank 3.7% and the Dow Jones industrials shed 2.9% in today’s stock market. Small caps tracked by the Russell 2000 stumbled 2.7%. Volume swelled on both major exchanges vs. the same time Wednesday.

Dow Jones Tanks After Initial Rise

New jobless claims came in at 881,000 last week, the Labor Department reported, below Econoday’s forecast for 958,000. But the market sold off. The Nasdaq and S&P 500 gapped down at the open, while the Dow was slightly higher in early trade.

Despite Thursday’s volatility, the U.S. stock market has reached new highs following the coronavirus crash. A resurgence in tech stocks has lifted the tech-heavy Nasdaq to a 34% year-to-date gain, while the S&P 500 is up 11% and the Dow up 2% through Wednesday’s close. The Russell 2000 is 5% underwater.

Covid-19 Update

The stock market has been in a confirmed uptrend since the April 2 follow-through day for the S&P 500, though it’s had some minor hiccups as Covid-19 cases proliferate. (Read The Big Picture for a detailed analysis on daily market action.)

U.S. Stock Market Today Overview

Index Symbol Price Gain/Loss % Change
Dow Jones (0DJIA) 28416.90 -683.60 -2.35
S&P 500 (0S&P5) 3468.31 -112.53 -3.14
Nasdaq (0NDQC ) 11503.53 -552.91 -4.59
Russell 2000 (IWM) 154.42 -4.04 -2.55
IBD 50 (FFTY) 37.60 -2.27 -5.69
Last Update: 12:46 PM ET 9/3/2020

Worldwide coronavirus cases have topped 26.2 million, with more than 868,000 deaths, according to Worldometer. In the U.S., confirmed cases are approaching 6.3 million, with the death toll now above 190,000.

As the race toward a coronavirus vaccine or treatment heats up, Novavax (NVAX) leapt more than 6% in heavy trade. The Maryland-based biotech announced positive early stage trial results for its Covid-19 vaccine candidate. Shares peaked at 189.40 Aug. 5, after starting the year below 4. Novavax stock is about 40% off its high.

Meantime, Sanofi (SNY) gapped up to an early gain before reversing to a 0.6% loss. It’s about 9% away from a 55.10 buy point of a flat base. Late Wednesday, the French drugmaker said it’s starting the first human tests for one of its Covid vaccine candidates. Sanofi said the vaccine, developed with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), is on track for approval in the first half of 2021.

Big-Cap Tech Stocks Drag Dow

Big-cap techs weighed on the Dow Jones index. Apple (AAPL) tumbled over 7% in heavy trade to extend its Wednesday’s 2% loss. Shares are still about 70% extended from a 72.15 buy point of a cup with handle, according to MarketSmith chart analysis. The IBD Leaderboard stock hit a record high on Tuesday.

Microsoft (MSFT) and Salesforce.com (CRM) sank more than 5% apiece, after both stocks marked new all-time highs during Wednesday’s session. Microsoft remains well extended from a 180.10 buy point of a cup with handle cleared in May. The software giant is an IBD Leaderboard and IBD Long-Term Leader stock.

Salesforce, which recently joined the Long-Term Leaders list, is nearly 60% extended past a 164.41 cup-with-handle entry after an early May breakout.

Four other blue chips including Cisco (CSCO), Home Depot (HD) and Visa (V) shed more than 3% each. Only two Dow stocks — American Express (AXP) and JPMorgan (JPM) — bucked the sell-off.

Software, automaker and chip stocks led the downside among IBD’s 197 industry groups. Winners hailed mostly from defensive sectors such as banks, food and utilities.

Tesla Skids Again

Tesla (TSLA) skidded 8% in fast turnover, on track to stretch its losses for a third straight session. The stock closed at an all-time high Monday, just shy of the 500 level. It’s about 18% off its Tuesday intraday high of 502.49.

The Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) slumped 5.7%. It’s getting close to a test of its 50-day moving average.

China online gaming stock Douyu International Holdings (DOYU) and Digital Turbine (APPS) plunged 10% each. Chip stocks Nvidia (NVDA), Inphi (IPHI) and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) dived more than 7% apiece.

VanEck Vectors Semiconductor (SMH) and iShares PHLX Semiconductor (SOXX) lost about 5% each.

Follow Nancy Gondo on Twitter at @IBD_NGondo

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