May 4th, 2010
08:11 PM ET

Stocks slump, oil prices plummet

A look at highlights from the day's business news:

Stocks pummeled on debt worries

Stocks slumped Tuesday on worries that the global recovery could suffer if Europe's efforts to contain Greece's debt problems don't succeed and if China's efforts to slow its booming economy go too far.

Bond prices rallied, lowering the corresponding yields, as investors sought the comparative safety of government debt. The euro fell to a new yearly low versus the dollar, pummeling dollar-traded energy prices and stocks.

The Dow Jones industrial average slumped 235 points, after having fallen as much as 282 points earlier. The decline was equivalent to 2.1 percent. The S&P 500 index lost 29 points, or 2.4 percent. The Nasdaq composite fell 76 points, or 3 percent.

Dollar firms on European debt woes

The dollar continued to gain ground Tuesday, trading at a one-year high against the euro, as investors remain nervous about broader debt problems in Europe.

What prices are doing: The dollar gained 1.46 percent versus the euro to $1.3004 - holding near its lowest levels since mid April 2009. It was up 0.56 percent on the pound to $1.5158. Against the yen, the dollar fell 0.1 percent to ¥94.46.

What's moving the market: The euro remained under pressure as ongoing debt fears weighed on global stock markets.

Oil prices plummet after 4 days of gains

Oil prices dropped sharply Tuesday as a stronger dollar, fueled by renewed European sovereign debt woes and signals of lower demand, lessened the appeal of buying crude.

But gasoline prices continued their climb, up 0.9 cent a gallon in the latest survey conducted for motorist group AAA.

What prices are doing: Crude oil for June delivery plunged $3.45, or 4 percent, to settle at $82.74 a barrel, breaking a four-day rally.

Greece bailout fears boost Treasurys

U.S. bonds rallied Tuesday, as fears about Greece's ability to refinance its debt again plagued investors.

What prices are doing: The benchmark 10-year note rose 23/32 to 100-6/32, pushing the yield down to 3.61 percent. Bond prices and yields move in opposite directions.

The 30-year bond rallied 1-24/32 to 103-10/32 with a 4.43 percent yield. The 2-year note rose to 100-3/32 with a 0.96 percent yield. The 5-year note gained 12/32 to 100-18/32, yielding 2.39 percent.

What's moving the market: At a meeting in Berlin Tuesday, a coalition of three German political parties called for legislation that, in the future, would allow for the "orderly" default of euro-zone countries with massive deficits.

CNNMoney.com reporters Annalyn Censky, Chavon Sutton, Ben Rooney and Alexandra Twin contributed to this report.

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