Patti Domm is CNBC executive news editor, responsible for news coverage of the markets and economy. Prior to joining CNBC in 1999 as senior news editor, Domm was the equities editor for the Americas at Reuters. She was also Wall Street editor at Reuters, reporting on mergers, acquisitions and the Street. She also edited three CNBC books on personal investing. Domm serves on the board of the Financial Womens Association of New York.
Wall Street's favorite fear meter jumped more than 26 percent Tuesday, its biggest one-day gain since May, as stocks swooned on fears the Middle East turmoil would spread and oil prices would continue to climb. The VIX, the CBOE's volatility index, finished the day at 20.80.
As oil prices race toward $100 a barrel, the expectations that gasoline prices will catch fire are running high.
Global fear trade aside, U.S. stocks could be ready for a three- to six-week pause after a 27 percent run in the past six months, according to Oppenheimer Asset Management's chief technician Carter Worth.
As oil prices surge, experts discuss the tipping point at which the costlier commodity will begin to impact stock markets and the economy.
The S&P is now up 6.8 percent for the year, and analysts and traders keep watching for the pullback that just doesn't seem to come. Turmoil in the Middle East, recurring sovereign debt concerns in Europe and now the idea of inflation all hang over markets.
Central banker speak and a G-20 meeting are the highlights Friday, as traders check positions ahead of the long President's Day weekend.
Consumer prices rose slightly more than expected in January, and still point to a moderate inflation rate, but another number has traders buzzing.
Investors looking for a pull back are wondering if Tuesday's stock market weakness is the start of a quick sell off, but it may not be.
Names on the move ahead of the open.
Traders will be on the lookout for any signs of overseas weakness seeping into U.S. economy after surprisingly soft job growth.
IPO market flashing warning signs
Traders will likely do after the disappointing jobs data what they have been doing for the past six weeks or so: nothing.
Patti Domm is CNBC Executive Editor, News, responsible for news coverage of the markets and economy.
A CNBC reporter since 1990, Bob Pisani covers Wall Street from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
Senior Producer - Breaking News
Dominic Chu is a markets reporter for CNBC.
Evelyn Cheng is a markets writer for CNBC.
Sara Eisen is a correspondent for CNBC, focusing on currencies and the global consumer.