US STOCKS-Wall St slides on lower crude prices, options expiry

viernes 18 de diciembre de 2015 14:07 GYT

* S&P, Dow on track for worst 2-day run since Nov. 1

* Boeing biggest drag on Dow; Apple weighs on S&P, Nasdaq

* Disney falls after rating cut

* Indexes down: Dow 1.61 pct, S&P 1.33 pct, Nasdaq 1.24 pct (Updates to early afternoon)

By Abhiram Nandakumar

Dec 18 (Reuters) - The Dow Jones industrial average shed nearly 300 points as crude prices headed for their third straight weekly loss, and stock and index options contracts expired.

The Dow and the S&P 500 were on track for their worst two-day run since Nov. 1, and the Nasdaq since mid-November, almost erasing gains from the three-day rally up to the Federal Reserve's interest rate hike on Wednesday.

Volatility was slightly higher than usual on account of "quadruple witching" - the expiry of options on stocks and indexes as well as futures on indexes and single stocks.

"I look at it as purely a sentiment-driven market. There's no new news that's any kind of substance that's driving this," said Jeff Powell, managing partner of Polaris Wealth Advisors in California.   Continuación...