Investing.com - U.S. stocks opened lower on Wednesday, as the release of downbeat U.S. data fuelled fresh concerns over the strength of the country's economic recovery, although positive reports published earlier in the week still lent some support.
During early U.S. trade, the Dow 30 edged down 0.12%, the S&P 500 fell 0.20%, while the NASDAQ Composite slid 0.29%.
Payroll processing firm ADP said non-farm private employment rose by 179,000 in May, below expectations for an increase of 210,000. April's figure was revised down to a gain of 215,000 from a previously reported increase of 220,000.
A separate report showed that U.S. trade deficit widened to $47.24 billion in April, from $44.18 billion in March whose figure was revised from a previously estimated deficit of $40.40 billion. Analysts had expected the trade deficit to widen to $40.80billion in April.
In the auto sector, Tesla Motors (NASDAQ:TSLA) tumbled 1% after Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk said he plans to stay at least another 4 to 5 years at the head of the electric car company.
Separately, General Motors (NYSE:GM) gained 0.62% after saying on Tuesday that sales rose above estimates in May. The company also apologized in a statement to the families of accident victims who have been asked to bring in cars to replace defective ignition switches.
GM has recalled 2.6 million vehicles to replace a defective switch that has been linked to 13 fatalities.
Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) added to losses, down 0.95%, following reports the social media giant will be acquiring Pryte, a Finnish company that aims to make it easier for mobile phone users in under-developed parts of the world to use wireless Internet apps.
In similar news, The Dai-ichi Life Insurance (TOKYO:8750) said it would acquire Protective Life (NYSE:PL) for $5.7 billion, sending shares in the U.S. life insurer skyrocketing 17.93%.
Elsewhere, FuelCell Energy (NASDAQ:FCEL), a maker of fuel-cell power plants, reported a larger loss than expected in the second quarter, sending shares down 12.28%.
Across the Atlantic, European stock markets were lower. The DJ Euro Stoxx 50 slid 0.33%, France's CAC 40 fell 0.23%, Germany's DAX slipped 0.22%, while Britain's FTSE 100 shed 0.39%.
During the Asian trading session, Hong Kong's Hang Seng declined 0.60%, while Japan's Nikkei 225 rose 0.22%.
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