Energy Sinks Stocks Ahead of Election

Solid jobs numbers couldn't keep stocks in the black today, and major U.S. indexes are moving lower in today's session. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI  ) is down 1% near the end of the trading day, and the S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC  ) has fallen 0.85%.

A Labor Department report said the U.S. created 171,000 jobs in October, which easily beat the increase of 125,000 economists expected. But it wasn't enough to get investors buying today. The unemployment rate did tick slightly higher to 7.9% after a drop last month.

Leading stocks lower were energy companies -- an unusual turn of events following positive economic news. But investors are seeing a possible reduction in demand due to fuel shortages in areas affected by Hurricane Sandy as a reason to sell today. Oil fell nearly 3% today and closed below $85. I don't think the drop in oil will last long once infrastructure in the Northeast is up and running again.

Chevron (NYSE: CVX  ) didn't help matters by posting a disappointing earnings report. Revenue fell from a year ago, and profit was cut by nearly a third. The stock dropped 3.2% as a result. Fellow oil producer ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM  ) fell 1.4% on the negative news from the industry.

Shares of Bank of America (NYSE: BAC  ) are leading the Dow, gaining 1% so far today. The bank has consistently moved higher on positive economic news,and today is no different. The company's CFO also said he feels "very good" about the company's capital level in the current environment.

To learn more about the most-talked-about bank out there, check out our in-depth company report on Bank of America. The report details Bank of America's prospects, including three reasons to buy and three reasons to sell. Just click here to get access to the report, along with a year of free updates on the stock.

 

Fool contributor Travis Hoium has no positions in the stocks mentioned above. You can follow Travis on Twitter at @FlushDrawFool, check out his personal stock holdings, or follow his CAPS picks at TMFFlushDraw. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America and ExxonMobil. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend Chevron. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


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