The GovCon Index reflected a sell-off in U.S. stock markets to record a decline of 1.301 percent — or 0.918 points — to close at 75.529.
Orbital Sciences (NYSE: ORB) — the index’s largest gainer for the day — saw its stock price jump 2.36 percent to 30.32 per share after it said its merger with ATK‘s (NYSE: ATK) aerospace and defense groups is scheduled to close Feb. 9.
The companies set that date after shareholders at Orbital and ATK voted to approve the transaction Tuesday.
BAE Systems Inc., Booz Allen Hamilton (NYSE: BAH) and Engility Holdings (NYSE: EGL) were the only other index members to record gains for the day.
A Commerce Department report that showed a 3.4-percent decline in durable goods orders during December and investors showed concern that this could indicate a slowdown in global growth, Bloomberg reported.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.65 percent — or 291.49 points — to 17, 387.21, the S&P 500 composite index lost 1.34 percent — or 27.54 points — to 2, 029.55 and the NASDAQ composite index declined 1.89 percent — or 90.27 points — to 4, 681.50.