The drop in oil prices rattled Wall Street today, sending the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 1.5 percent, or 268.05 points, 17,533.15.
The decline is a step back for a market that’s seen the Dow repeatedly set record highs given strength of the U.S. economy, which added 321,000 jobs last month and has fared much better than the economies in Europe or Japan.
Oil prices have fallen to below $62 a barrel, upsetting the delicate balance in energy markets but helping consumers, who according to AAA are paying an average of $2.64 for a gallon of regular at the pump headed into the all-important holiday season.
Retail stocks took their cue from the broader market and went along for the ride down. The S&P 500 Retailing Industry Group declined 1.3 percent to 986.25 today.
Among the fashion industry decliners were Lands’ End Inc., which fell 7.3 percent to $46.95 after third-quarter sales fell short of expectations; Sears Holdings Corp., 5.3 percent to $32.29; J.C. Penney Co. Inc., 4.7 percent to $6.06, and Urban Outfitters Inc., 3.8 percent to $30.01.