NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Energy and retail stocks were pulling stock markets lower on Monday as Black Friday sales fizzled and crude oil prices fell to five-year lows.
Fewer consumers turned out for the deep discounts over the Thanksgiving weekend with total sales down 11% to $50.9 billion, according to the National Retail Federation. Total shopper turnout for the weekend missed estimates by 6 million people. On the upside, online shopping jumped 15% over the year-earlier period, a strong sign for Cyber Monday.
"It may be Black Friday fatigue. Some of the broader consumer trends remain fairly robust," said David Bechtel, principal of Barrow Funds, in a call. "By the same token, domestically we have ever-increasing levels of debt. The amount of private sector and government sector debt outstanding today is far above the levels that existed prior to the financial crisis. At some level that's going to restrain further consumer spending."
Oil prices seemed to have stabilized by Monday morning, rising 1.7% after a 7% drop on Friday. West Texas Intermediate crude hovered at $67.27 a barrel, around 38% lower than a mid-year high point, after OPEC said last week it would not constrain production to address oversupply and soft demand.
The slide in crude has hit oil companies hard. Over the past three months, Exxon Mobil (XOM) has dropped 9%, ConocoPhillips (COP) has fallen 19%, Hess (HES) has tumbled 28%, and Chevron (CVX) has declined 16%. The Energy Selector Sector SPDR ETF (XLE) has fallen nearly 20%.
Benchmark indices were all lower as the recent drop in oil weighed on stocks and slowing manufacturing activity in China and the eurozone in November worried investors. The S&P 500 dropped 0.79%, though still 15 points shy of record highs achieved last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.32% and Nasdaq slipped 1.3%.
Growth in the U.S. manufacturing sector was also slowing with the ISM index of national factory activity down to 58.7 in November from 59 a month earlier, though remaining above the 50 level indicative of expansion. New orders climbed to their highest level since August, up 66 from 65.8.
Lions Gate's (LGF) latest installment in the Hunger Games series dominated the holiday box office weekend, pulling in another $56.9 million in the U.S. The film has now generated more than $123 million worldwide. Shares added 2%. DreamWorks' (DWA) Penguins of Madagascar disappointed in its debut, mustering only $25.8 million for the animation studio. DreamWorks shares were down 7.2%.
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-- Written by Keris Alison Lahiff in New York.