Stock market nosedive

June 26, 2008 1:28:35 PM PDT
Stocks closed sharply lower as investors were beset with a barrage of bad news. The Dow Jones industrial average finished with a loss of 358 points at 11,453. Declining issues on the New York Stock Exchange led gainers better than 5-to-1 on volume of about 4.9 billion shares. The Nasdaq composite index was down nearly 80 points at the 2,321 level, with roughly 2.2 billion shares traded. And the S&P 500 dropped almost 39 points, closing at 1,283.

Among the issues that dogged the market today were another surge in oil prices and warnings of trouble in the key financial, automotive and high-tech industries.

Oil futures closed at an all-time high and General Motors shares plummeted to their lowest level in more than 30 years following negative comments from analysts.

Citigroup fell sharply after an analyst placed a "sell" rating on the stock, while disappointing outlooks from technology leaders Oracle Corporation and BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion made the tech sector one of the steepest decliners.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.) AP-NY-06-26-08 1613EDT