Offices around the country came to a halt on Thursday and so too did the stock market for the World Cup match between the United States and Germany.
Germany beat the U.S. 1-0 on Thursday in soggy Recife, Brazil, on Thomas Muller's 55th-minute goal to win Group G, but the Americans held on to second place when Portugal defeated Ghana 2-1 in a game played simultaneously in Brasilia.
The volume of total shares traded on U.S. exchanges from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m., during the game's goalless first half, was 20 percent below the volume averages traded during that time period in 2014, according to BATS Global Markets data. The game's second half, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. ET, saw an even more precipitous drop, down 25 percent from yearly volume averages at that time.
With a total of 5.13 billion shares traded on Thursday, only eight days in 2014 had fewer overall shares traded during regular market hours, BATS numbers show.
"Looking at the data, it certainly appears that folks may have been particularly distracted during the hours of noon and 2 p.m.," said Randy Williams, senior vice president of communications for BATS, the world's largest stock market operator.
Outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas said that Thursday's game would cost U.S. employers about $390 million in wages based on roughly eight million people taking a two-hour break and the average hourly earnings rate of $24.38, as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
U.S. INTO THE ROUND OF 16
- Doug McIntyre: Battered, bruised, through
- Jeff Carlisle: U.S. grades
- Chris Jones: U.S. ride their luck
- Klinsmann: "Now we really get started"
- Will the perception of U.S. soccer change?
- Tactics Board: Organized U.S. restrict Germany
- Social media: Reaction to U.S. progress
The U.S. team, who lost 1-0 to Germany but still advanced to the Round of 16, will play Group H winner Belgium on Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET (ESPN). The timing promises to wreak less havoc on the workplace and Wall Street, which closes as the match begins. The U.S. is advancing to the knockout round at consecutive World Cups for the first time in the team's history.
On Wednesday, U.S. Soccer sent out this tweet, A form Klinsmann letter "authorizing fans" to take off work on Thursday to watch the match.