The election has come and gone and President Barack Obama will serve four more years, but the U.S. equity markets seem to have gotten lost in the celebration and have fallen over a cliff.
After closing up 1.02 percent on election day, the Dow Jones Industrial Average tanked nearly 2 percent in afternoon trading on Wednesday, bringing the index below 1,300. Some big losses include UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH) down by 3.66 percent and Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) down by 4.2 percent in the afternoon.
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The Dow is up 6.24 percent year to date.
The S&P 500 Index is also down 2 percent in afternoon trading. Anticipated post-election concerns are being compounded by a negative outlook for the coal industry. At the head of the pack for losses is James River Coal Company (NASDAQ:JRCC), which crashed over 23 percent after posting a third-quarter report that failed to inspire any confidence. Coal stocks across the industry are seeing substantial losses.
The financial industry is co-leading the decline with share prices tumbling over 5 percent at Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), over 7 percent at Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS), and over 5 percent at Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) in afternoon trading.
The S&P is up 11.35 percent this year to date.
Not to be left out of what could be the worst market slide all year, the Nasdaq Composite is down over 2.2 percent in the afternoon. The Nasdaq is being battered by the 28-percent crash of Plexus (NASDAQ:PLXS), an electronic manufacturing provider, which lost its biggest customer last night.
The Nasdaq is up 13.03 percent this year to date.
“It’s going to be very messy,” James Dunigan, chief investment officer at PNC Wealth Management, told Bloomberg. With the dust of the election settling all around America, Wall Street is turning its focus ahead to the domestic budget debate and the fiscal cliff.
Oil (NYSE:USO) has come down 4 percent in the afternoon to about $85.12 per barrel.