U.S. Stocks Finish Stellar October With Sharp Decline
Stocks saw heavy selling Monday but still managed to log one of the strongest overall monthly gains in recent years.
Stocks sunk to session lows in the last hour of trading on Monday, the final trading day of October. The Dow Jones Industrial Average delivered the third best monthly percentage gain in its history despite losing 276 points, or 2.3%, on Monday to close at 11,955. For the month, the index gained 9.5%.
The S&P 500 saw its best month in roughly 20 years, gaining 11%, even though it gave back 32 points, or 2.5%, to finish Monday at 1253, and the Nasdaq fell 53 points, or 1.9%, to settle Monday at 2684. The Nasdaq also gained 11% in October.
Stocks were stuck in negative territory all day but accelerated losses late in the session. The weakness may have stemmed from Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou's call for a referendum on the recent plan to contain Greece's sovereign debt crisis.