Wall Street Opens Lower; Tesla Slides on Double Blow; Dow Down 110 Pts

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Investing.com — U.S. stock markets opened lower on Monday, consolidating in the absence of major news after hitting successive record highs last week. 

Market sentiment was somewhat unsettled by the spectacle of an abrupt sell-off in cryptocurrencies at the weekend, a reminder of how febrile the atmosphere in financial markets has been at times during the pandemic. There were also concerns at two setbacks for Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA), which was usual the most actively traded stock in early dealings. 

By 9:45 AM ET (1445 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 114 points, or 0.3%, at 34,086 points. The S&P 500 was down 0.2% and the Nasdaq Composite was down 0.1%. 

Tesla stock was down over 4% after a single protester at an auto show in China staged a protest against the company, alleging various quality defects, which quickly went viral. Given the tight government control over Chinese social media, and the recent state-orchestrated boycotts against other western companies, suspicions were immediately aroused that the protest was being used by the Chinese authorities to put pressure on Tesla, one of the highest-profile U.S. companies in China.

The protest came after a weekend on which two people died in a crash that cast fresh doubt on the capabilities of Tesla’s ‘Full Self-Driving’ software suite. Neither of the two passengers was in the driver’s seat at the time of the crash, according to police in Harris County, Texas. 

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