Stocks fell once again on Thursday following another dismal inflation report—with consumer prices jumping 7.9% in February, while investors hoping for a resolution to the Russia-Ukraine conflict were disappointed by the latest round of negotiations, which failed to make progress on establishing a stopfire.
Stocks took a hit after February’s red-hot inflation report: The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.3%, over 100 points, while the S&P 500 lost 0.4% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite nearly 1%.
Consumer prices rose 7.9% in the 12 months ending in February, according to data from the Labor Department, climbing at the fastest clip in four decades as oil and gas prices have surged due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The ongoing conflict has weighed heavily on markets and continued to do so on Thursday, as negotiations between Russian and Ukrainian officials made little progress on issues such as establishing a cease-fire or humanitarian corridors for evacuation of civilians.
Oil prices, which have skyrocketed in recent weeks amid the ongoing conflict, rebounded on Thursday after falling over 10% a day earlier: US benchmark West Texas Intermediate now sits at $114 per barrel, while global benchmark Brent crude is trading at around $117 per barrel .
The impact of higher oil prices will be felt by Americans at the gas pump, economists have warned, with US gas prices already at record levels, hitting a new all-time high of more than $4.31 per gallon on Thursday, according to AAA data.
Shares of e-commerce giant Amazon, meanwhile, jumped nearly 4% a day after announcing a 20-1 stock split and $10 billion buyback—following in the footsteps of Google parent Alphabet and other mega-cap tech companies which have recently split their stocks .