Stock indexes drop, extending losses to third week, as oil prices fall and dollar strengthens

NEW YORK, N.Y. – Stocks are closing lower, led by declines in utilities and materials stocks.

The price of oil took another sharp turn lower Friday and the dollar moved higher against the euro, threatening to pinch the profits of big U.S. exporters.

The Dow Jones industrial average slumped 145 points, or 0.8 per cent, to 17,749.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 12 points, or 0.6 per cent, to 2,053. The Nasdaq composite declined 21 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 4,871.

Crude oil fell $2.21, nearly 5 per cent, to $44.84 a barrel in New York. Oil has fallen 10 per cent this week and is close to a six-year low.

Rig operator Transocean dropped 5 per cent.

U.S. government bond prices didn’t move much. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note was unchanged at 2.12 per cent.