Feb. 17 (UPI) — U.S. markets tumbled as concerns over Russia taking military action against Ukraine flared up Thursday.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 622.24 points, or 1.78%, while the S&P 500 fell 2.12%, and the Nasdaq Composite closed the day down 2.88%.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Thursday said that Russia was “clearly” planning an attack in the coming days, while President Joe Biden said the threat of a Russian invasion of Ukraine was “very high.”
Ukraine tensions weighed on oil and bond yields as crude oil prices fell 2.15% to $91.65 per barrel and the 10-year treasury benchmark fell 7.5 basis points to 1.97%.
“When you have a risk-off environment that we’ve been seeing all year, adding on Ukraine is certainly not going to help the situation, so I’m not surprised to see heightened sensitivity,” Barret Asset Management Chief Investment Officer Amy Kong told Yahoo Finance. “In general, we have seen through time and through stock market history, that geopolitical events have stressed the market.”
Tech stocks were among the biggest losers Thursday as Palantir Technologies fell 15.75% after the company missed quarterly profit expectations and shares of chipmaker Nvidia dropped 7.56% despite beating earnings expectations.
Conversely, shares of DoorDash rose 10.69% and Cisco Systems gained 2.8% as both companies reported better-than-expected earnings.
Amid the Russia tensions, investors turned to consumer staples with Walmart leading the sector as shares rose 4% after the retailer reported better-than-expected earnings.