Oil prices continued to rise while consumer confidence plunged sending the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow dropping 90 points to 12,903. Nasdaq fell 21 points to 2512.
On the upside
Exar (Nasdaq: EXAR) blamed a significant goodwill impairment charge for widening fourth quarter losses.
On the downside
In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks tumbled 9 points to 735.