Markets Close Lower As Russia-Ukraine War Escalates

U.S. indices traded lower after Russian forces in Ukraine seized control of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant. Conflict escalation has continued to lift energy and oil prices amid supply concerns.

WTI crude oil prices traded at around $111 per barrel on Friday after briefly hitting their highest levels in 14 years earlier in the week.

The Labor Department reported Friday that the U.S. economy added 678,000 jobs in February, far surpassing economist estimates of 440,000 jobs. The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 3.8%, while wages grew 5.1% from a year ago.

  • The Nasdaq composite finished lower by 1.66% to 13,313; The Invesco QQQ Trust Series 1 QQQ lost 1.45% to $337.30
  • The S&P 500 traded lower by 0.79% to 4,328; The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust SPY lost 0.78% to $432.30
  • The Dow Jones composite finished flat at 11,513; The SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF Trust DIA finished lower by 0.49% to $336.47

Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell told Congress he still believes a series of 0.25% interest rate hikes are appropriate for now but acknowledged the conflict in Ukraine has created economic uncertainty. Powell also said the Fed likely should have taken a more aggressive approach to combating inflation and noted that the Russian invasion will apply "upward pressure on inflation at least for a while."

Here are the day's winners and losers from the S&P 500, according to data from Benzinga Pro.

Occidental Petroleum Corporation OXY, Kroger Co KR and Mosaic Co MOS were among the top gainers for the SPY Friday.

PVH Corp PVH, Aptiv PLC APTV and United Airlines Holdings Inc UAL were among the top losers for the S&P 500.

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