US STOCKS-Energy stocks lead Wall St lower in broad retreat

lunes 5 de enero de 2015 16:10 GYT

* Indexes down: Dow 1.88 pct, S&P 1.91 pct, Nasdaq 1.74 pct (Updates prices)

By Sinead Carew

NEW YORK Jan 5 (Reuters) - Energy shares led a broad decline on Wall Street on Monday in the wake of a drop in crude prices to fresh 5-1/2 year lows amid concerns economic problems elsewhere in the world could hurt the United States.

The S&P was set for its first four-day losing streak since December 2013 as crude oil futures prices dropped to their lowest since May 2009 amid a global supply glut and lackluster demand.

Russia's oil output hit a post-Soviet high last year, and Iraq's oil exports in December were highest since 1980. U.S. crude dipped below $50 a barrel for the first time since April 2009 and Brent fell 6 percent.

The euro fell to a near nine-year low against the dollar of $1.18605 on the EBS platform, tumbling on political uncertainty in Greece and fears of a possible Greek exit from the euro zone.

On top of the oil price impact on energy companies, Stephen Massocca, chief investment officer, Wedbush Equity Management LLC in San Francisco said investors were concerned about overseas economies, with a particular focus on Europe.

"We were at this elevated high at the end of December adding to the impetus for the decline on top of worldwide growth concerns and what's going on in energy. Those are the three big issues right now," he said.

The strength in the dollar was putting more pressure on dollar-denominated commodities. A measure of the greenback against a basket of major currencies hit its highest since December 2005.   Continuación...