It was not the best of reaction to the re-election of Barack Obama as the President of the United States for a second term.
Stocks fell in opening trades on Wednesday, with sentiments hit by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi's remarks on the Eurozone's weakness.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) was down 293.75 (-2.22%), at 12,951.93. The S&P 500(INDEXSP:.INX) was down -31.37 (-2.20%), at 1,397.02. The NASDAQ Composite (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) was down -66.98 (-2.22%), at 2,944.95.
Despite the clear majority with which Obama had been elected, there was uncertainty as to the direction that the U.S. economy would take and how it would recover.
Fiscal problems of the U.S. slowdown in Europe returned to haunt investors in both the regions as temporary euphoria created by Democrats victory evaporated.
In less than two months, tax cuts enacted under President George W. Bush will expire and mandatory spending cuts will begin to bite in what has been called a "fiscal cliff" that could crush the U.S. economic recovery.
The dollar rose to a two-month high against a basket of currencies of 80.863 and also hit a high of 0.9468 Swiss francs.
The MSCI world equity index which had climbed 0.25 percent in the wake of Tuesday's election lost this ground as trading progressed to be slightly lower at 331.46 points by midday in Europe.
European Central Bank President Mario Draghi, who spoke ahead of the bank's November policy meeting on Thursday, said the outlook for the euro zone economy was expected to remain weak though inflation was well contained.
The European Commission also released forecasts that showed that the region would be virtually stagnant next year.
James River Coal Company(NASDAQ:JRCC) shares declined 19.57% to $3.78 in the morning hour after the company posted third quarter net loss of $20.6 million, or 59 cents per share, from $3.7 million, or 11 cents per share, in the same quarter a year earlier. Loss on an adjusted basis was $1.23 per share, more than the $1.04 per-share loss analysts had estimated. Revenue fell 5% to $288.1 million, but was higher than the average estimate of $261.7 million.
LivePerson, Inc.(NASDAQ:LPSN) stock dropped 15.52% to $12.41. The company reported third quarter adjusted net income of $0.08 per share, as compared to $0.09 per share last year. The consensus estimate was for EPS of $0.08. The company expects to report fourth quarter adjusted net income of $0.07 to $0.09 and between $0.30 and $0.33 for the full year. The consensus estimates are for EPS of $0.10 and $0.32.
Blyth, Inc.(NYSE:BTH) shares declined 15.30% to $16.11 in the early hour. The company reported a third quarter profit of $745,000, or four cents a share, as compared with a year-earlier loss of $5.6 million, or 34 cents a share. Adjusted earnings were 13 cents a share in the latest period, compared with a year-earlier loss of 20 cents. Revenue climbed 40% to $268.8 million.
VirnetX Holding Corporation(NYSEAMEX:VHC) soared 19% following its legal win against Apple. Though the ruling was related to FaceTime, VirnetX's VPN patents could theoretically be asserted against many other products - the company is also suing Cisco, Avaya, and Siemens. An Apple (AAPL) attorney sounds defiant: "VirnetX is not entitled to money for things they did not invent.
There are two particular sector, which are lagging including the coal sector and education sector.
It's a bloodbath for education stocks in early post-election trading. Called "President stocks" by some analysts due to the support the Obama administration has offered for federal backing of student loans, today the sector is in far from a celebratory mood. Was it something President Obama said last night?
Apollo Group Inc(NASDAQ:APOL) fell 8.54%, Career Education Corp.(NASDAQ:CECO) fell 9% and DeVry Inc.(NYSE:DV) tumbled 6.50%.
Coal sector losers including Alpha Natural Resources, Inc.(NYSE:ANR) tumbled 10.50%, Arch Coal Inc(NYSE:ACI) lost 11% and CONSOL Energy Inc.(NYSE:CNX) fell 5.60%.
Ciena Corporation(NASDAQ:CIEN) and JDS Uniphase Corp(NASDAQ:JDSU) are both bucking the trend and rose 9% and 4.50% respectively all got a strong boost on Wednesday morning -- defying a broad market slump -- after telecommunications giant AT&T T -3.22% announced plans to spend $14 billion on network expansion over the next three years.