Poor earnings reports led to a sell-off while investors anticipate Apple's earnings next week.
The stock market suffered its worst loss since June on the 25th anniversary of the 1987 stock market crash. The sell-off didn't match the magnitude of that dark day, but it was a stark reminder to investors that there are still major issues for today's market and economy to overcome. The catalyst for the sell-off today was a slew of poor earnings reports in which major companies warned about signs of slowing economic growth. The Nasdaq continues to perform the weakest among the indices, dropping 2.19% on the day, while the Dow dropped more than 200 points (1.52%).
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) dropped 2.90% after missing Wall Street expectations with its earnings last night, dragging down PC stocks with it. Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE:AMD) dropped 16.79% to its lowest levels since 2009 after reporting a big loss and issuing weak forecasts. McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) finished down 4.46% after its earnings disappointment. General Electric (NYSE:GE) fell 3.42% and Chipotle (NYSE:CMG) dropped 15.01% after a very weak report for the second straight quarter.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) also weighed heavily on the market as investors grow cautious leading up to the company's earnings report next Thursday. Supply issues have plagued the release of the iPhone 5, which was confirmed by Verizon in a statement this morning. The inability to meet demand could have a detrimental effect on the company’s earnings report.
Healthy markets do not experience such broad and harsh sell-offs, so today's action will put traders on alert for heightened volatility and two-way action.