Dow Drops 120 to End '09 But yearly gains are still biggest since 2003 By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Dec 31, 2009 3:10 PM CST 1 comment Comments The New York Stock Exchange Christmas tree is covered in snow on the final trading day of 2009, Thursday, Dec. 31, 2009, in New York. (AP Photo/Henny Ray Abrams) (Newser) – The markets finished the year on a bearish note, reports MarketWatch. Because jobless claims fell, investors are worried that the Fed will consider it a sign of a strengthening economy and raise interest rates in the new year. Despite the final-day fall, the Dow posted its biggest yearly gain since 2003, a rise of about 19%. The Dow dropped 120 points to close at 10,428. The Nasdaq fell 22 to finish at 2,269. The S&P 500 dropped 11 to 1,115.