Stocks are getting smoked

Stocks opened in the red on Tuesday after snapping a two-day streak of gains on Monday.

Near 9:45 am ET on Tuesday, the Dow was down 164 points, the S&P 500 was down 18 points, and the Nasdaq was down 58 points.

US Treasuries continued their recent sell off, with the yield on the benchmark 10-year note gaining one basis point, or 0.01, to 2.28%. The yield on the long 30-year bond was at 3.05%, the highest since early November.

European stocks also tumbled on Tuesday, with every major index on the continent falling more than 1%.

The big company news today is Verizon’s acquisition of AOL for $US4.4 billion, or $US50 per share. That’s a 17% premium over AOL’s Monday closing price of $US42.59.

In early trading, AOL shares rose 17% to around $US50.13 per share, after surging in pre-market trading. Verizon shares fell around 1%.

In economic data, the NFIB small business optimism report rose to 96.9, beating the forecast for a reading of 96, and up from 95.2 in the prior month, according to Bloomberg.

At 10:00 a.m., we’ll get the latest Job Openings and Labour Turnover Survey, or JOLTS.

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