U.S. stock indices opened considerably lower on Wednesday after Apple, America's biggest company in valuation, forecast its first drop in revenues in 13 years, pointing to weaker profitability for corporations ahead as China slows down and the world experiences a draft of economic headwinds. Oil prices also tumbled anew, dragging energy shares down with them.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average index fell 108 points, or 0.67% to 16,058, threatening to slide below 16,000 again, while NASDAQ Composite gave up 20 points, or nearly half a percent to 4,548. Standard and Poor's dropped four points, or 0.25% to 1,900.
European shares recorded losses as well, with the pan-European index FTSEurofirst 300 sliding 0.30% to 1,331. Germany's DAX tumbled a hundred points, or 0.60%, vastly underperforming the wider market. France's CAC 40 on the other hand performed better, trading flat at 4,359. Britain's FTSE was the biggest winner, jumping half a percent to 5,946.
Oil prices renewed their long journey of decline, after a private survey reported a massive increase in crude inventories last week, with U.S. crude futures edging down 30 cents, or 0.90% to $31.16 a barrel. Brent crude futures stabilized, gaining 4 cents, or 0.14% to $32.64 a barrel.
U.S. dollar index, which gauges the greenback's performance versus a basket of rivals, inched down 0.10% to 98.96, ahead of a final statement by the Federal Reserve after its first meeting of 2016, expected to be dovish and to hold interest rates unchanged. Dollar rose 0.30% against sterling to 1.4307, while faltering 0.15% versus euro to 1.0888.
Silver prices struggled despite the slipping dollar, with the white metal's futures skidding 0.75% to $14.45 an ounce, while gold futures shed 0.23% to trade at $1,116 an ounce.