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Tech selloff hits US stocks; Nasdaq slumps 2.9%, Dow -1.4%

Mar 28. 2018
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By Agence France-Presse
New York

Wall Street was back on shaky ground on Tuesday, with huge declines in technology shares leaving major stock indices sharply lower.

The tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 2.9 percent to 7,008.81.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.4 percent to 23,857.71, while the broad-based S&P 500 shed 1.7 percent 2,612.62.

Analysts pointed to a cascade of negative stories surrounding leading technology names, including Facebook, Tesla Motors and Twitter.

"You've got large cap tech that led this downdraft," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities.

"Once this market starts in a direction like this, you're not going to see anybody step in and catch a falling knife."

Tuesday's losses set the market back on the red after Monday's brief surge. Stocks also fell sharply on Thursday and Friday on worries about President Donald Trump's trade policies, but those fears have receded somewhat in the last couple of days.

Facebook dropped 4.9 percent as the social media company continued to face scrutiny over a customer data scandal. Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg turned down a request by British lawmakers to appear in Parliament but reportedly agreed to testify at a US congressional hearing.

Tesla slumped 8.2 percent after the National Transportation Safety Board announced it was investigating a fatal crash last week involving a Tesla automobile in California.

Twitter dived 12.0 percent after a report from Citron Research warned the company was vulnerable to a regulatory crackdown over its data privacy policies. Citron is known for placing bets on stock price falls.

Google parent Alphabet sank 4.6 percent after a US appeals court revived Oracle's lawsuit alleging that Google owed billions of dollars in damages over the search engine company's use of Java programming language in its Android smartphone operating system. Oracle lost 2.4 percent.

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