Stocks Hit by Soft Data, Syria Conflict

U.S. stocks ended lower on Tuesday on weaker-than-expected eurozone economic data and conflict in Syria. The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 116.81 points, or 0.68%, to 17,055.87. The Standard & Poor’s 500 lost 11.52 points, or 0.58%, to 1982.77. The Nasdaq composite fell 19.00 points, or 0.42%, to 4508.69.

The European economy is sputtering. The financial information firm Markit reported Tuesday that its purchasing managers’ index for the 18 countries that use the euro currency fell in September to a nine-month low.

The U.S. and five Arab nations attacked the Islamic State group’s headquarters in eastern Syria in nighttime raids. Land- and sea-based U.S. aircraft as well as Tomahawk cruise missiles launched from two Navy ships in the Red Sea and the northern Persian Gulf were used.

Norwegian chemical company Yara International ASA said Tuesday that it is discussing a merger with U.S. fertilizer producer CF Industries, potentially boosting the company’s U.S. footprint.

Barclays PLC (BCS) has been fined $15 million for failing to maintain adequate internal compliance related to its Barclays Capital unit’s acquiring Lehman Brothers in 2008, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced Tuesday.

Philips NV said Tuesday it would split into two new companies and prepare its lighting business for a stand-alone future, marking a new phase in the overhaul of the Dutch conglomerate.

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