NEW YORK — European debt flared again as a worry for Wall Street and drove stocks Wednesday to their worst loss in a month. The Dow Jones industrial average skidded, and the price of gold plunged $57.90, or 3.5 percent, to $1,614.10, its lowest level since January.
It was only the second time this year the Dow has recorded a triple-digit decline. The average gained 8 percent from January through March, its best first quarter since 1998, but has lost 1 percent already in April.
A disappointing auction of government debt in Spain signaled that investor confidence in that country’s finances is weakening. Spain announced tax increases and budget cuts last week, which could hurt its economy further.
The Dow was down as much as 179 points early in the day; it recovered to close down 124.80 at 13,074.75.
The S&P 500 finished down 14.42 at 1,398.96.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq index fell 45.48 to 3,068.09, its worst decline of the year and the sixth loss in seven days.
A cruise ship is set to call at the Union Pier terminal this morning for a two-day visit.
The Seven Seas Navigator will dock around 8 a.m. and sail Friday around 8 p.m. for Wilmington, N.C. The call is part of an 11-night East Coast and Bermuda itinerary.
No street closures are required, and no passengers will be picked up or dropped off in Charleston.
SAN FRANCISCO — Yahoo is laying off 2,000 employees as new CEO Scott Thompson sweeps out jobs that don’t fit into his plans for turning around the beleaguered Internet company.
The cuts announced Wednesday represent about 14 percent of the 14,100 workers employed by Yahoo.
The company estimated it will save about $375 million annually after the layoffs are completed this year. Some of those affected will stay on for an unspecified period of time to finish various projects, according to Yahoo.
The housecleaning marks Yahoo’s sixth mass layoff in the past four years under three CEOs. This one will inflict the deepest cuts yet, eclipsing a cost-cutting spree that laid off 1,500 workers in late 2008.
NEW YORK — YouTube and Paramount Pictures have reached a deal to make nearly 500 films available to rent online, even while their owners feud over a lawsuit.
The films will be available on YouTube Rentals and Google Play.
The agreement announced Wednesday makes Paramount the fifth major Hollywood studio to join YouTube’s online video store, a growing rental library that typically charges $2 to $4 per viewing.
Paramount seemed less likely to join given that its parent, Viacom, is pursuing a 2006 lawsuit that seeks damages for alleged piracy by YouTube, which is owned by Google.
NEW YORK — Burger King is going public again. The world’s No. 2 hamburger chain, which is in the midst of overhauling its menu and stores, said it expects to relist its shares within the next three months.
In a deal announced late Tuesday, 3G Capital said it is selling a 29 percent stake in Burger King for $1.4 billion in cash to Justice Holdings, a London shell specifically set up to invest in another company.
Justice Holdings’ shares will suspend trading on the London Stock Exchange once the deal is completed. It then will emerge as Burger King Worldwide, and its shares will be traded on the New York Stock Exchange.