The Dow lost 274 points, which was the worst one-day drop in 2012 and brings the blue-chip index into negative territory for the year (0.8 percent). It also moves the Dow closer to the 12,000 mark (12,118). The so-called Volatility Index, or VIX, rose to 26, its highest level so far this year (though still half the level of late 2008). It was a strange session in the sense that attention was squarely focused on the U.S. economy rather than Europe. In recent weeks, market fundamentals seemed to have been bypassed for moment-by-moment news out of Greece or the EU. As the Federal Reserve prepares to meet next week, you can be sure there will be plenty of chatter about central bank intervention.
Chart: Dow Jones Industrial Average for month of May. NYT