Midday Update: Stocks Extend Losses Despite Missed Jobs

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Stocks continue to lose altitude Friday and were trading at new lows for the year as Wall Street is unnerved by interest-rate speculation and deteriorating conditions in the Middle East along with banking woes in Portugal and fall-out from Russian sanctions. A small pop in the futures market this morning following a below-consensus gain in non-farm payrolls coupled with a small gain in the jobless rate evaporated soon after the open as selling pressure that started yesterday continues to plague equities.

Today's deluge of economic data kicked off with a 209,000 gain in July non-farm payrolls and a small increase in the jobless rate to 6.2% from 6.1% in June. Although the gain in payrolls was less than the 230,000 the street expected, it was the sixth consecutive month employers hired more than 200,000 new workers. Also, the increase in the jobless rate was attributed to a corresponding gain in the participation rate, reflecting more people rejoining the workforce to look for jobs.

Personal income and spending were both up 0.4% in June, meeting expectations. While the increase was modest, it underscored the improved consumer environment and contributed to forecasts for a 2.5% growth rate in Q3.


The Markit purchasing managers index in the U.S. fell to 55.8 in July, below the consensus for a decline to just 56.0 from 56.3 initially, and from 57.3 in June. However, the Institute for Supply Management manufacturing index rose to 57.1 in July from 55.3 the month prior, beating estimate for a gain to just 56.0.

Consumer confidence also improved as the Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index showed a modest revision to July from 81.3 initially to 81.8.

Finally, construction spending plummeted 1.8% in June, missing the consensus for a 0.5% gain.

European markets haven't fared any better after PMIs from across the globe underscored the still sluggish global economy. Exacerbated by underlying worries of how Russian sanctions will impact the European economy, and the freefall in Portugal's Banco Espirito Santo tainting the European banking sector, Europe's bourses all closed with steep losses.

Crude oil was down $0.86 to $97.28 per barrel. Natural gas was up $0.02 to $3.86 per 1 million BTU. Gold was up $12.10 to $1,295.10 an ounce, while silver was down $0.01 to $20.40 an ounce. Copper was down $0.01 to $3.22 per pound.

Among energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund was down 0.73% to $36.05 with the United States Natural Gas Fund was up 0.47% to $21.20. Amongst precious-metal funds, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF was down 0.08% to 25.93 while SPDR Gold Shares was up 0.91% to $124.50. The iShares Silver Trust was down 0.20% to $19.53.

Here's where the U.S. markets stand at mid-day:

NYSE Composite Index down 67.50 (-0.63%) to 10,658.92

Dow Jones Industrial Average down 94.24 (-0.57%) to 1,6469.06

S&P 500 down 10.08 (-0.52%) to 1,920.59

Nasdaq Composite Index down 34.19 (-0.78%) to 4,335.58

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

Nikkei 225 Index down 0.63%

Hang Seng Index down 0.91%

Shanghai China Composite Index down 0.74%

FTSE 100 Index down 0.76%

CAC 40 down 1.02%

DAX down 2.10%

NYSE SECTOR INDICES

NYSE Energy Sector Index up 0.61%

NYSE Financial Sector Index down 0.90%

NYSE Healthcare Sector Index down 0.43%

UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) BYI (+29.51%) Agreed to be bought by Scientific Games ( SGMS ) for $5.1 billion.

(+) MBLY (+52.28%) Well- received IPO of 35 million shares priced at $25.

(+) LNKD (+10.41%) Reported better than expected Q2 results and guidance.

DOWNSIDE MOVERS

(-) BOTA (-24.61%) Flu drug LANI doesn't achieve desired reduction in symptoms.

(-) YRCW (-22.61%) Posts wider than expected Q2 loss, revenue in line with estimates.

(-) KEYW (-15.04%) Reports wider Q2 loss, beats on revenue.

(-) JIVE (-14.14%) Downgraded to Neutral by Credit Suisse on downward revision to billings.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2014 MTNewswires.com. All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.


This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: SGMS

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As of 12/18/2014, 04:15 PM


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