Concerns about the economic slowdown, clearly evident in the balance sheets of companies and the consequent fears that a recession is on the way, were the causes, according to analysts, for yet another bad day on Wall Street.

All three major stock indexes closed in the red, but still slightly above their session lows. The Nasdaq index fell the most after Microsoft, the first big tech company to report quarterly results, turned on all the red lights inside the walls of the securities market.

“The downturn in the economy and the job market is starting to materialize,” said Oliver Pursche of Wealthspire Advisors, quoted by Reuters. “For most of last year, the big concern has been inflation and the only way to reduce it is to cool the economy,” he added. “We are doing this. It’s a natural progression, but it’s unnerving for investors.”

The fourth-quarter earnings phase has come to a head, with 95 of the S&P 500 companies having already submitted earnings forecasts. Of these, 67% have growth estimates, well below the average growth rate, which is 76% in the last four quarters.

Analysts now forecast aggregate earnings for the S&P 500 to fall 3% year over year, nearly double the 1.6% drop seen earlier.

The Dow Jones continues to fall to 33,694.17 points, minus 39.79 points or minus 0.12%; the S&P 500 loses to 4,009.91 points, minus 7.04 points or minus 0.18%; and the Nasdaq slides to 11,297.99 points, minus 36.28 points or minus 0.32%, continuing to be the most penalized index.


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