Stocks Slammed by China Turmoil, Oil Plunge

U.S. stocks slammed at open on Thursday, as another trading halt in Chinese shares and sliding oil prices fueled heavy selling on Wall Street. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately dropped 189.91 points, or 1.12%, to 16,716.60. The S&P 500 fell 23.46 points, or 1.18%, to 1,966.80. The Nasdaq Composite was down 77.17 points, or 1.60%, to 4,758.59.

The resurgence of Chinese stock-market turmoil in 2016 has investors increasingly betting that Federal Reserve officials will lose some of their resolve and delay future interest-rate boosts.

Oil prices plunged to levels not seen in more than a decade on Thursday, hammered by the continuing turmoil in China, the world’s second biggest oil consumer. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate futures were trading down 3.3% at $32.83 a barrel. Earlier, WTI slid to $32.10 a barrel, the lowest level since December 2003.

The number of Americans filing for jobless benefits fell last week and layoffs in December were the smallest in 15-1/2 years. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 10,000 to a seasonally adjusted 277,000 for the week ended Jan. 2, the Labor Department said.

KB Home (KBH) said Thursday it had net income of $44 million, or 43 cents a share, in the fourth quarter, down from $852.8 million, or $8.36 a share, in the year-earlier period, which was boosted by a tax gain. Revenue rose 24% to $985.8 million.

Yahoo Inc. (YHOO) is preparing to slash at least 10% of its workforce, according to a report Wednesday night by Business Insider. That would eliminate more than 1,000 jobs, according to the report, and cuts may begin as soon as this month.

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