Crude Oil Plunges, Dow Falls 117 Plunging crude closes at less than $38 a barrel By Newser Editors and Wire Services Posted Dec 7, 2015 3:18 PM CST 14 comments Comments Trader Robert Charmak, foreground right, works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Friday, Dec. 4, 2015. (AP Photo/Richard Drew) (Newser) – Energy companies are closing sharply lower, leading a broad decline on the stock market, after the price of oil dropped to its lowest point in nearly seven years. US crude plunged almost 6% to close below $38 a barrel Monday. That's the lowest level since February 2009, at the height of the financial crisis. Exxon Mobil and Chevron each fell 3%, the biggest declines in the Dow Jones industrial average. Airline stocks rose on the prospect of lower fuel costs. Delta Air Lines and JetBlue Airways each rose 4%. The Dow gave up 117 points, or 0.7%, to 17,730. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 14 points, or 0.7%, to 2,077. The Nasdaq composite dropped 40 points, or 0.8%, to 5,101.