Nasdaq falls on geopolitical tensions

Safe havens such as Treasuries and gold were back in favor on June 14 as stocks fell due to rising tensions in the Middle East, concerns over growth, and the looming threat of the US-China trade war.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index fell 0.67% in the first hour of trading on June 14. Global stocks were choppy as well. Iran attacked two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, which caused oil prices (which have been struggling lately) to spike.

The Nasdaq Composite Index is still up 4.6% this month, as investors are hoping for a rate cut.

On the same day, China posted weaker-than-expected industrial production numbers for May, intensifying worries of a slowdown in the second-largest economy in the world.

Chip stocks were out of favor

Gold prices hit a four-month high of $1,350 per ounce on June 14, partly because worries about tensions in the Middle East slowing growth have caused investors to hedge their equity exposures with safe havens such as gold.

Chip stocks were the worst-performing sector on the day. The iShares PHLX Semiconductor ETF (SOXX), which tracks the sector, was down 2.9% in the first hour of trading.

AMD (AMD), which recently hit its all-time high of $34.3, has since plunged. On June 14 alone, the stock fell 4.1% on worries related to slowing growth in China. Similarly, NVIDIA (NVDA), which receives a significant portion of its revenue from China, fell 3.2%. The sector has been very volatile in the past nine months or so.

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Dish Network’s (DISH) wireless business is currently in the making, as cord cutting has hit US satellite pay-TV providers harder than their cable counterparts.

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