The Financial Industry Leads the Dow Lower


Now that the Dow Jones Industrial Average's 10-day winning streak is over, the index appears to be working on a losing streak. After falling 25 points on Friday, the Dow is down another 18 points, or 0.13%, as of 12:55 p.m. EDT.

On Friday, it appeared investors were ready for the streak to end, as they took money off the table and locked in profits. But today, a stressed world financial system is leading the markets lower following a controversial decision in the small country of Cyprus.

On Saturday, the European Union bailed out Cyprus, which really didn't make world news. But what did make headlines is the fact that part of the bailout will be paid for by the country's bank deposits. The deal imposes a tax on all checking and savings deposits within the country. This breaks the long-held rule that bank deposits are untouchable and the "safest" place to store your money.

Cyprus' government still needs to vote on the bailout deal, but the distant threat of bank runs not only in Cyprus but throughout Europe has the markets moving lower.

Today's Dow downers
My fellow Fool Alex Planes noted earlier today that on March 18, 1850, the modern U.S. financial industry began, and due to the announcement from Cyprus' government officials on Saturday, institutions that have survived for more than 162 years are under stress today. Shares of American Express and JPMorgan Chase are down 0.4% and 1%, respectively, as investors fear irrational consumers may bring the European financial system to a grinding halt.

As we saw with the financial crisis just a few years ago, the world banking system is more connected and intertwined than ever before. Once one domino is tipped over, it's difficult to save the rest before they have all fallen. If Cyprus' solution to its own problems spreads fear throughout Europe, the U.S. banking system and financial industry will also take a hit.

Shares of Boeing are also losing altitude today after its closest competitor, Airbus, announced the largest commercial airplane deal ever. Lion Air, operating out of Indonesia, ordered 234 planes, worth $24 billion, from Airbus. The deal is not only a missed opportunity for Boeing, but it also represents a lost customer. Just last year, Lion Air cut a deal with Boeing for 230 of its new 737 Max airplanes worth more than $22 billion. That deal also gave Lion Air the right to buy 150 more, but it would now appear that the option for more 737s will not be exercised.

Boeing is a major player in a multitrillion-dollar market in which the opportunities are massive. However, emerging competitors and the company's execution problems have investors wondering whether Boeing will live up to its shareholder responsibilities. In our premium research report on the company, two of The Motley Fool's best industrial-sector minds have collaborated to provide investors with the must-know info on Boeing. They'll be updating the report as key news hits, so don't miss out -- simply click here now to claim your copy today.

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Fool contributor Matt Thalmanowns shares of Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase & Co.. The Motley Fool recommends American Express. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase & Co. Check back Monday through Friday as Matt explains what caused the Dow's winners and losers of the day, and every Saturday for a weekly recap. Follow Matt on Twitter: @mthalman5513. 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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