Oil and China hit Wall Street - New York Report

CRASHING oil prices and fears over weak Chinese data yesterday pulled US stocks down in a choppy session.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 162.51 points, or 0.92 per cent, to 17,568, the S&P 500 lost 13.48 points, or 0.65 per cent, to 2,063.59 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 3.57 points, or 0.07 per cent, to 5,098.24.

Data released overnight showed China’s imports fell for the 13th consecutive month, with an 8.7 percent decline in November compared with a year earlier.

Oil major Exxon, fell 2.8 per cent and was the biggest drag on the S&P. The S&P energy sector fell 1.5 per cent in its fifth straight day of declines and has fallen 10.4 per cent since 1 December.

Some investors expect oil soon to bounce back and reverse broader market sentiment.

“I suspect we could be in for a nice rally in spite of the fact the Fed is likely to raise interest rates next week,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial, in New York.