(By Balachander) U.S. stocks retreated for the third straight day amid continuing worries about the financial situation in the eurozone and disappointing earnings reports, including United Parcel Service Inc.
S&P 500 Index shed 0.90 percent to close at 1,338.32. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.82 percent to end at 12,617.32. The Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 0.94 percent to finish at 2,862.99.
The losses accelerated after Reuters reported, quoting European Union officials, that Greece will likely need to restructure its debt again. Meanwhile, the latest hints from Spain pointed that the country could require a full bailout. Spain's Murcia region has reportedly sought help from the government for financial aid after Valencia and more regions are likely to follow suit.
In other European news, a report from Markit Economics said the eurozone private sector contracted for a sixth month in July. A survey showed Germany's private sector contracted for a third consecutive month, and Moody's lowered the nation's rating outlook to negative.
Hot Stocks Of The Day: AAPL, UPS, WHR, BTU, LXK, PFE, CSCO, DV, UA, BRKR
In corporate news, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is due to post its third-quarter results after the market closes. The Cupertino, California-based technology giant is expected to report 33 percent growth in earnings and 30.7 percent rise in sales for the April to June period.
United Parcel Service Inc. (NYSE:UPS) retreated 4.63 percent after the economic bellwether reported lower than expected quarterly results due to weaker economic conditions. The package delivery giant also cut its 2012 earnings outlook.
Whirlpool Corp. (NYSE:WHR) tumbled 7.65 percent after the maker of home appliances posted quarterly earnings and revenue that fell short of consensus estimates.
Peabody Energy Corp. (NYSE:BTU) lost 11.27 percent after the coal miner forecast earnings for the third quarter that trailed Wall Street view.
Lexmark International Inc. (NYSE:LXK) slumped 12.75 percent after the office imaging company guided third-quarter earnings below analysts' expectations.
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) declined 1.02 percent after the pharmaceutical giant announced negative results from a late-stage trial of its experimental Alzheimer's drug.
Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) fell 5.91 percent. The maker of networking equipments announced plans to cut 2 percent of jobs. Further selling pressure was generated following an announcement from VMware Inc. (NYSE:VMW) that the provider of virtualization-based cloud infrastructure services will acquire Nicira Inc. for around $1.26 billion.
DeVry Inc. (NYSE:DV) retreated 24.53 percent after the Downers Grove, Illinois-based for-profit education company warned that fourth-quarter results will miss Wall Street expectations. The company expects EPS of 43 cents to 46 cents on revenue between $500 million and $510 million.
Under Armour Inc. (NYSE:UA) jumped 9.12 percent after the athletic apparel company boosted its earnings and sales guidance on higher demand for its products.
Bruker Corp. (NASDAQ:BRKR) shed 13.70 percent after the maker of life science systems forecast earnings for the second quarter that trailed market expectations, citing softening customer demand, higher spending and a weaker euro.
European markets ended in red, with Germany's DAX falling 0.45 percent to close at 6,390.41. France's CAC40 declined 0.87 percent to finish at 3,074.68. U.K.'s FTSE 100 lost 0.63 percent to end at 5,499.23.
Among Asian markets, China's Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite Index added 0.24 percent to finish at 2,146.59. Japan's Nikkei 225 dropped 0.24 percent to end at 8,488.09. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index retreated 0.79 percent to end at 18,093.20. India's BSE Sensex finished at 16,918.08, up 0.24 percent.
Commodity & Currency Scan:
Crude oil futures rose 0.68 percent to $88.74 per barrel and natural gas futures added 1.64 percent to $3.168 per million metric British thermal units. Gold futures inched up 0.10 percent to $1,579.0 per ounce while silver futures declined 0.47 percent to $26.915 per ounce.
In the currency market, the euro shed 0.37 percent against the U.S. dollar to 1.2072. The British pound advanced 0.06 percent against the greenback to 1.5516, while the dollar dropped 0.26 percent against the Japanese yen to 78.1900.