Stocks Ended Lower amid Euro Zone Fears

Stocks ended lower on Monday as rising bond yields in Italy and other euro zone countries reminded investors that despite changes in governments, the region’s debt crisis could still spin out of control.The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 74.70 points, or 0.61%, to 12,078.98. The S&P 500 relinquished recently captured year-to-date gains to trade down 12.07 points, or 0.96%, at 1,251.78. The Nasdaq Composite fell 21.53 points, or 0.80%, to 2,657.22.

Spain was in danger of resuming its place at the forefront of the European debt crisis Monday as banks sought to trim exposure to sovereign debt, economists and strategists said. Spain’s 10-year government bond yield spiked back above 6% for the first time since early August, rising by 25 basis points to 6.07%. Moreover, the premium demanded by investors to lend to Spain rather than Germany hit a euro-era record at more than 4.25 percentage points.

Deutsche Bank AG (DBKGn.DE) Chief Executive Josef Ackermann’s tenure at the top of Germany’s largest lender will end in 2012 after it emerged on Monday that he withdrew his candidacy to join the supervisory board.

Gold prices fell Monday as hopes dim that stability will return soon to Italy and Greece. Gold for December delivery fell $9.70, or less than 1 percent, to settle at $1,788.40 per ounce Monday. Silver prices also fell. While silver is used as a raw material for manufacturing, many investors also buy the precious metal to protect against inflation. December silver lost 65.8 cents to close at $34.024 an ounce.

The Supreme Court said Monday it will hear arguments next March over President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul — a case that could shake the political landscape as voters are deciding if Obama deserves another term.

Amazon.com Inc began shipping its Kindle Fire on Monday, a day earlier than it expected and extending its lead time over Barnes & Noble Inc’s rival Nook tablet.Amazon’s $199 7-inch entree into the tablet computer arena, which may give Apple Inc’s costlier iPad some competition but competes most directly with the new Nook, ships a day before the latest Kindle Touch e-reader devices.

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