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Overnight Markets: US stocks fall on government shutdown fears
by Himanshu Singh on Oct 01, 2013 at 05:41
Wall Street declined on Monday as a stalemate over the US federal budget sent the government toward a potential shutdown at midnight, but major indices ended September with solid monthly gains.
The Dow Jones industrial average was down 129 points, or 0.84%, at 15,130. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 10 points, or 0.60%, at 1,682. The Nasdaq Composite Index was down 10 points, or 0.27%, at 3,771.
For the month the benchmark S&P 500 index ended up 3%, the Dow rose 2.2% and the Nasdaq added 5.1%.
With the law funding thousands of routine government activities set to expire at midnight, US Senate Democrats rejected a proposal by the Republican-led House of Representatives to delay Obamacare for a year in return for temporary funding of the federal government beyond Monday. US lawmakers were supposed to approve emergency legislation by midnight yesterday to keep the federal government operating from today, the beginning of the 2014 fiscal year.
Energy shares were the top decliners yesterday, in line with a decline in US crude oil prices. Exxon Mobil (XOM.N) fell 1% while Occidental Petroleum (OXY.N) lost 1%. Devon Energy slid 1.6% and Tesoro retreated 1.7%.
Consumer-staples also suffered with Procter & Gamble slipping 2.1%, and Coca-Cola retreating 1.4%.
Defense shares fell, with Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) declining 1.3% and Alliant Techsystems Inc (ATK.N) losing 0.7%.
Elsewhere, J.C. Penney Co. fell 2.7%, extending last week’s losses. Apple Inc. declined 1.2%.
However, healthcare shares outperformed the broader market including St. Jude Medical (STJ.N), up 2.4%, and Edwards Life (EW.N), up 1.2%. Boston Scientific Corp (BSX.N) was also up 1.9%.
In Asia, shares oscillated between gains and losses as investors awaited a potential shutdown of the US government and a report showed confidence among large Japanese manufacturers increased.
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