Opening Bell Report

Rising oil prices, slowing consumer spending and disappointing corporate earnings triggered a sell-off despite yesterday's interest rate cut by the Federal Reserve Bank. The Dow plummeted more than 225 points to 13,704 while Nasdaq dropped 41 points to 2817.

On the upside

Shares of United Therapeutics (Nasdaq: UTHR) rallied after the biotech firm reported a jump in hypertension drug sales and profits that surpassed expectations.

Disability insurer Unum Group (NYSE: UNM) raised its 2007 profit outlook while the company nearly completed a review of denied claims.

Westwood One (NYSE: WON) posted lower revenues and profits, but the radio and TV broadcaster noted a stable audience and an improved profit outlook for 2007.

On the downside

Shares of Exxon Mobil (NYSE: XOM) fell after the world's largest oil company posted its 2nd consecutive decline in quarterly profits.

Citigroup (NYSE: C) was downgraded by analysts on worries that the credit crunch may continue to impact its lending business.

Heavy equipment maker Manitowoc (NYSE: MTW) reaffirmed its profit outlook for 2007, but investors took profit on its shares which had been trading at record highs.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 8 to 1 on the NYSE and by a margin of 4 to 1 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks tumbled 21 points to 806.

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