The major U.S. indexes closed out Wednesday's session at 1-month lows, on more weakness in the energy markets. Bobbi Rebell reports.
TV AND WEB RESTRICTIONS~****~ Stocks dropped more than one percent on Wednesday- the third straight day of losses- it was the largest daily percentage drop on the S&P 500 since Oct. 13. Oil prices dropped to a five-year low, extending their slide of more than 40 percent since June. A U.S. government report said crude stocks unexpectedly rose last week and OPEC forecast declining demand for crude oil in 2015. International economist Maria Fiorini Ramirez says prices could head further south. SOUNDBITE: MARIA FIORINI RAMIREZ, PRESIDENT AND CEO, MARIA FIORINI RAMIREZ, INC. (ENGLISH) SAYING: "There' s a lot more room for prices to come down, but also I think in the marketplace, more of the speculative activity probably is still selling oil stocks, shorting the oil market, shorting commodities maybe in general, so I don't think that trade on the short side has reached bottom yet." The latest to cut capital spending plans due to those lower prices: Goodrich Petroleum and Oasis Petroleum. They were among the NYSE's top losers. U.S. airlines could chop its fuel bill next year by more than $10 billion, according to Barclays. The brokerage upgraded United Continental and American Airlines to overweight. It also hiked the price targets of all the airlines it covers, including Delta, Southwest, JetBlue and Spirit. Krispy Kreme got creamed. The donut chain's quarterly profit and sales missed forecasts. The food safety scare in China still weighs over YUM Brands. The operator of the KFC and Pizza Hut chains cut its full-year profit forecast for the second time. Several brokerages then slashed their price targets. Luxury homebuilder Toll Brother's stock fell despite double digit gains in quarterly profit and revenue. Over in Europe, that drop in oil prices knocked stocks down for the third straight session- the major indexes closing mostly lower.