Meanwhile, Hewlett-Packard shares [HPQ 30.97 -0.42 (-1.34%) ] rebounded after briefly halting, following a report that the tech giant plans to spinoff its PC business and acquire a UK business-software company. The Dow component is slated to post earnings after-the-bell tonight.
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Stocks were off their session lows after European markets closed, but the major averages were still sharply lower across the board following a handful of disappointing economic news and over continuing worries over the stability of euro zone banks.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average shaved some of its losses but was still sharply lower, led by GE [GE 15.32 -0.91 (-5.61%) ] and Bank of America [BAC 7.0099 -0.4501 (-6.03%) ], after squeezing out a small gain in the previous session. The Dow was down almost 530 points in its session low.