The battered Dow Jones Industrial average escaped further damage in Wednesday's heavy trading, ending the day up 0.33 points, but the stocks of most publicly traded companies in Orange County continued to get badly bruised.
The price of a composite share of common stock of the county's 100 largest public companies fell to $6.77, down 4.1% from $7.06 Tuesday and off 40.1% from the Oct. 2 average of $11.30 per share.
Of the 100 local stocks, 62 lost value in Wednesday's trading, while 21 posted gains and 17 finished the day unchanged.
Additionally, 43 of the 100 stocks closed at their lowest prices of the past 52 weeks.
Jeffrey Kilpatrick, president of Newport Securities, said that the share prices of an "unprecedented" 40 of 132 county-based companies tracked by his brokerage ended the day at less than book value.