Technology stocks lead U.S. financial markets lower

Tech stocks are getting slammed, Dow drops more than 400 points

Tech giants slide, pulling US stock market sharply lower

Wall Street's sell-off gathered pace on Monday afternoon, with the benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average briefly shedding two percent as shares in Apple continued to weaken.

Apple stock plunged 5.04 percent and closed at 193.46 USA dollars per share after the main supplier for its Face ID technology, Lumentum Holdings, slashed revenue and profit forecasts, citing reduced orders from a major customer.

The S&P 500 index dropped 43 points, or 1.6 per cent, to 2,737 as of 1:07 pm Eastern Time.

Nearly all market sectors ended the day in negative territory with tech stocks falling 5.54 per cent, discretionary consumer goods by 2.31 per cent, energy 2.14 per cent and both finance and industrials by 1.99 per cent. The Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 206.03 points, or 2.78 percent, to 7,200.87. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 30.70 points, or 2 percent, to 1,518.79.

The S&P 500 index fell 16 points, or 0.6 per cent to 2,764.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 495 points, or 1.9 percent, to 25,496. Micron Technology lost 4.2 percent to $37.43.

Amazon slid 4.4 percent to $1,636.85. Shares in Lumentum plunged 33 percent to $37.50. Apple shares closed on Monday 5.04% lower, trading below the United States dollars 200.00 mark again. On Friday, the "big five" most valuable tech companies in the US (Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Microsoft) lost a combined US$75 billion.

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"The valuation in tech sector could potentially go lower and the semiconductors are really going to weigh in the near-term, especially with the fresh releases in numbers and the China situation", said Lindsey Bell, investment strategist at CFRA Research in NY.

Athenahealth jumped 9.6 per cent after the struggling medical billing software maker received a buyout offer.

US-CHINA TRADE: Markets in Shanghai and Hong gained after the South China Morning Post reported Chinese President Xi Jinping's top economic adviser, Vice Premier Liu He, might visit Washington ahead of Xi's planned meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump.

Saudi Arabia, the world's largest oil exporter, said on Sunday it would cut its shipments by half a million bpd in December due to seasonal lower demand. Shares of US chipmaker NVIDIA pulled back 6.90 percent.

The price of oil also fell, with Brent Crude, the worldwide benchmark, dropping to under $69 while West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. measure slipped to under $59.

At 11:32 a.m. ET, the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index was down 117.76 points, or 0.77 per cent, at 15,156.74.

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