NEW YORK — Stocks of publicly traded food retailers fell along with the broader market Thursday in what was among the biggest stock market plunges of the year. The Dow Jones industrials fell by 310 points, or 2.26%, after being down as much as 450 points in mid-afternoon trading, reports said. The S&P 500 fell by 2.33% as investors sought safer investments such as U.S. Treasuries, following a report from the Commerce Department showing new home sales in June were at their lowest level in five months. Food retailers Arden Group (down 5.9%), Ingles Markets (down 5.21%) and Spartan Stores (down 6.07%) saw the largest declines in the sector. A&P (up 0.19%) and Pathmark up (0.24%) were the only stocks in the SN index to trade up on Thursday.
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