Nasdaq Composite exhibiting signs of panic-like buying on Thursday as broader stock market weakens

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Trading in the Nasdaq was exhibiting panic-like-buying behavior Thursday late morning, even as the broader market softened amid a gloomy economic outlook from the Federal Reserve. The Nasdaq Composite was up a modest 0.3% at 11,181, while the Nasdaq Arms Index, a volume-weighted breadth measure, fell to 0.330, while many on Wall Street see declines below 0.500 as suggesting panic buying. The Arms Index is calculated by dividing the ratio of the number of advancing stocks over decliners by the ratio of the volume of advancing stocks over declining volume. As the stock market rises, the Arms often falls below 1.000, as the buyers rush into advancing stocks. The current dynamic suggests that investors may continue to adhere to a trend of buying large-capitalization technology-related names as a haven proxy in times of uncertainty. The number of stocks declining on the Nasdaq on Thursday outnumbered advancers by nearly 2.4 to 1, while volume in advancing stocks represented 58% of total volume on the Nasdaq. Meanwhile, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 24 points, or less than 0.1%, at 27,674, while the S&P 500 index was off less than 0.1% at 3,374. The Dow was looking at its fourth straight decline, which would mark its longest losing skid since a 7-day session ended Feb. 28.
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