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U.S. stocks declined sharply on Thursday (Aug. 5), with the Dow notching its biggest drop in nearly five months and falling below the psychologically key 10,000 level, as crude oil prices shot to a new high of $44.50 a barrel before settling at $44.41.
The surge in crude oil prices came following news that the Russian government had barred oil major YUKOS from access to its bank accounts, threatening its ability to continue exports.
“Investors don’t like uncertainty and this situation has clearly made the markets very uncertain,” said Marc Pado, U.S. market strategist at Cantor Fitzgerald.
The RV industry was essentially unaffected this spring when gasoline prices eclipsed $2 a gallon, but insiders will watch closely to see if higher prices and, perhaps more importantly, questions of availability linger.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 163.48 points, or 1.6 percent, at 9,963.03 – its biggest one-day point decline since March 11. The blue chips gauge last closed below the 10,000 mark on July 26.
The Nasdaq Composite Index meanwhile, skid 33.43 points, or 1.8 percent, to 1,821.63 and the S&P 500 slumped 17.93 points, or 1.6 percent, to 1,080.70.
Most RV stocks were down for the day, highlighted by Thor (-$1.27), Monaco (-$1) and Winnebago (-$1.11).