US market close: Dow plunges after first US Omicron case
By Joseph Toppe
21:51, 1 December 2021
The major US indices closed Wednesday in the red after the first American case of the Omicron variant was diagnosed in California.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 461.68 points to 34,022.04, after being up more than 520 points at the high of the day.
The S&P 500 lost nearly 1.2% to end at 4,513.04, while the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.8% to 15,254.05 after rising as much as 1.8% earlier in the session.
In comparison, at mid-day today, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 406 points, or 1.2%, while the Nasdaq Composite jumped 1.6% and the S&P 500 followed closely with a 1.5% pop.
Omicron case confirmed in San Francisco
In a joint statement, the San Francisco Health Department and California’s Health Department confirmed the first case of the Covid-19 variant Omicron in San Francisco.
According to the release, the case was discovered by California’s testing and genome sequencing surveillance.
What is your sentiment on JWN?
Winners and losers: Covid-19 variant stalls travel and retail
Travel stocks continue to suffer as shares for Royal Caribbean sank 7.95% and shares for American Airlines went down 8%.
Oil: Crude prices sink as industry awaits travel delays
Oil futures are down on Wednesday after hitting gains earlier in the session.
West Texas Intermediate crude for January delivery dropped 61 cents, or 0.9%, to settle at $65.57 a barrel, down from an intraday high of $69.49.
February Brent crude, the global benchmark, slipped 36 cents, or 0.5%, to $68.87 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe.
Gold: Metal’s lone bright spot
Gold futures ended higher on Wednesday despite Wall Street’s reaction to the first case of Omicron inside America’s borders.
The most active February gold contract added $7.80, or 0.4%, to settle at $1,784.30 an ounce, while silver futures extended their loss from Tuesday, sinking 48 cents, or 2.1%, at $22.339 an ounce.
Forex: US dollar outworks yen
On Wednesday, one US dollar equals 1.28 of the Canadian dollar, 112.85 of the Japanese yen, 0.88 of the euro, and 0.75 of the pound sterling.
The ICE US Dollar Index, a measure of the currency against a half-dozen other monetary units, was flat at 96.002, while the 10-year Treasury note yields went up around 1.433%, compared with 1.440%.
Read more: The Omicron effect: What's next for global stock markets?
Markets in this article