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US market close: Dow drops as Omicron stirs Wall Street

By Joseph Toppe

21:52, 30 November 2021

Dow Jones logo
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 650 points Tuesday as the Federal Reserve warned about the Omicron variant - Photo: Shutterstock

The major US indexes are down after trading on Tuesday amid rising concerns over the Covid-19 variant Omicron.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 652.22 points to 34,483.72, the S&P 500 lost 1.9% to 4,567.00, while the Nasdaq Composite sank nearly 1.6% to 15,537.69.

The small-cap benchmark Russell 2000 went 1.9% lower to 2,198.91.

Powell’s warning

In his first public remarks since the Omicron strain’s discovery, Fed Chair Jerome Powell flagged significant downside risks to both employment and economic activity, which markets have interpreted as a signal for an easy-for-longer policy stance.

Analysts are also assessing the economic risks arising from the new variant, and some of them are already expecting a slowdown in the pace of US monetary policy normalisation.

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Winners and losers: Omicron sinks travel shares

Shares for Expedia Group closed 3.3% lower, shares for Norwegian Cruise Lines ended down 3.5%, while shares for Carnival dropped 3% and shares for Booking Holdings are down 3.7%.

Shares for Dollar Tree are off by 5.3% after getting downgraded to neutral from buy at Goldman Sachs.

Shares for Zoom Video Communications lost 3.5% after getting upgraded to underperform from sell at Daiwa Securities.

Oil: Energy shares stumble, travel slows in wake of Omicron

Oil futures were lower on Tuesday and held onto their mid-day losses.


43,971.70 Price
-1.370% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 106.00

Oil - Crude

71.41 Price
+2.320% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0204%
Short position overnight fee -0.0015%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.030


2,004.85 Price
-1.180% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0198%
Short position overnight fee 0.0116%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.50


0.67 Price
-0.510% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.01168

January West Texas Intermediate crude fell $3.77 on Tuesday, or 5.4%, to settle at $66.18 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, down nearly 21% for the month of November.

January Brent crude closed at $70.57 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe, down $2.87, or 3.9%, on the contract’s expiration day, posting a monthly loss of over 16%.

Gold: Precious metal loses in November

Gold prices closed lower on Tuesday after Fed Chair Jerome Powell suggested the central bank might accelerate its tapering strategy when it meets next month.

On Tuesday, the most active February gold contract, dropped $8.70, or 0.5%, to settle at $1,776.50 an ounce, after trading as high as $1,811.40 during the session.

Based on the most-active contracts, prices are down 0.4% in November.

Forex: Yields hold session decline

On Tuesday, one US dollar equals 0.88 of the euro, 0.75 of the pound sterling, 0.92 of the Swiss franc, and 1.28 of the Canadian dollar.

The 10-year Treasury yield dropped beneath 1.45%, losing nine basis points to 1.44% (1 basis point equals 0.01%).

The benchmark yield was as high as 1.69% last week before Friday’s drop below 1.5%.

Read more: US Fed chair grilled on length of inflation. 

Markets in this article

Dollar Tree
124.50 USD
-2.37 -1.870%
Dollar Tree
124.50 USD
-2.37 -1.870%
145.59 USD
1.85 +1.290%

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The difference between trading assets and CFDs
The main difference between CFD trading and trading assets, such as commodities and stocks, is that you don’t own the underlying asset when you trade on a CFD.
You can still benefit if the market moves in your favour, or make a loss if it moves against you. However, with traditional trading you enter a contract to exchange the legal ownership of the individual shares or the commodities for money, and you own this until you sell it again.
CFDs are leveraged products, which means that you only need to deposit a percentage of the full value of the CFD trade in order to open a position. But with traditional trading, you buy the assets for the full amount. In the UK, there is no stamp duty on CFD trading, but there is when you buy stocks, for example.
CFDs attract overnight costs to hold the trades (unless you use 1-1 leverage), which makes them more suited to short-term trading opportunities. Stocks and commodities are more normally bought and held for longer. You might also pay a broker commission or fees when buying and selling assets direct and you’d need somewhere to store them safely.
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