Traders work the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.(Photo: David Karp, AP)
- Shoppers flooded stores in record numbers over Black Friday weekend
- New White House report warns of unresolved ‘fiscal cliff’ economic consequences
- Oil prices jump nearly 1.5% on concerns about the Middle East
4:40PM EST November 26. 2012 –
NEW YORK (AP) — Major stock indexes ended mixed Monday after a warning from White House economists dampened what had been a huge weekend for retailers.
The Dow Jones industrial average finished down 42.31 points, 0.3%, to 12,967.37. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500 index closed down 2.88 points, 0.2%, to 1,406.29. The tech-laden Nasdaq composite index, boosted by gains in the shares of Facebook (FB) and Yahoo (YHOO), finished up 9.93 points, 0.3% to 2,976.78.
The price of crude oil closed up 1.4% to $86.67 on concerns about the Middle East. Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Monday abruptly announced he was quitting politics, injecting new turmoil into that nation’s political scene weeks ahead of general elections.
The euro gained a penny, 0.7%, to finish at 1.2969 against the dollar. And the price of gold fell $2.40, 0.1%, to close at $1,749.
Shoppers flooded stores in record numbers over the holiday weekend, according to the National Retail Federation. The organization says 247 million shoppers visited stores and websites during the Thanksgiving holiday, up 9.2% from last year. And investors are anxious to see how retailers fared on Cyber Monday.
However, a new report from the National Economic Council and the Council of Economic Advisers said that if the current budget impasse remains unresolved, a sudden increase in taxes for middle-income taxpayers could reduce consumer spending nearly $200 billion in 2013.
In overseas trading, European markets ended Monday lower on fears that a deal to allow Greece to get another round of bailout funding might elude the finance ministers of the 17-nation eurozone.
Following last week’s bout of optimism, which sent a number of stock indexes near 2012 highs and the euro back toward $1.30, some investors were expected to cash in on their gains.
In Europe, Britain’s FTSE 100 stock index closed down 0.6% to close at 5,786.72 while Germany’s DAX 30 finished 0.2% lower to 7,292.03. The CAC-40 index in France ended 0.8% to 3,500.94.
Earlier, Asian markets failed to make much headway. While Japan’s Nikkei 225 index ended up 0.2% to 9,388.94, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was sapped of momentum by lethargic mainland Chinese markets, closing 0.3% lower at 21,857.77.
In China, the Shanghai Composite Index was down 0.5% to 2,017.46 for the day while the smaller Shenzhen Composite Index lost 1.4% to end Monday at 789.49.
Oil prices tracked equities lower, with the benchmark New York rate down 79 cents at $87.49 per barrel in electronic trading
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
- ^ http://www.usatoday.com/money/tools/FB/ (www.usatoday.com)
- ^ http://www.usatoday.com/money/tools/YHOO/ (www.usatoday.com)
- ^ http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2012/11/26/israel-barak-politics-netanyahu/1726503/ (www.usatoday.com)
- ^ https://sigfig.usatoday.com/ (sigfig.usatoday.com)
- ^ http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2012/11/25/black-friday-weekend-wrap-up/1725279/ (www.usatoday.com)
- ^ http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2012/11/26/cyber-monday-fast-bumpy-start/1727005/ (www.usatoday.com)
- ^ http://www.usatoday.com/story/theoval/2012/11/26/obama-cyber-monday-middle-class-tax-cuts/1726521/ (www.usatoday.com)
- ^ http://www.usatoday.com/money/markets/world-stocks/ (www.usatoday.com)
- ^ http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2012/11/26/euro-greek-crisis/1726773/ (www.usatoday.com)