Stocks slumping on a surge in jobless claims data last week. Economists said even considering disruptions from Hurricane Sandy, the addition of 78,000 new claims last week are considerable.
Also adding to stock weakness was dismal earnings news from Walmart (WMT) and Target (TGT). Walmart shares reportedly dropped on a lower than expected forecast for 4th quarter results, and Target's sales were increasing at a slower rate from last year.
At lunchtime, the Dow was down .53%, the S&P 500 was down .52% and the Nasdaq was down .57%.
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