In the U.S.: U.S. Stocks Decline On Europe Concern As Commodities Fall

8 June 2012


A far more somber mood in U.S. markets today after two days of gains…European troubles on the mind.

U.S. stocks fell, trimming the biggest weekly gain in 2012 for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, as commodities tumbled and disappointing economic data in Europe added to concern about a global slowdown.

The S&P 500 fell 0.2 percent to 1,312.21 at 9:31 a.m. New York time. The benchmark gauge has risen 2.9 percent this week.

Equity futures joined a global slump as German exports dropped in April for the first time this year as weaker global growth curbed demand. French business confidence and Italian output also declined. The trade deficit in the U.S. narrowed in April as a drop in imports overshadowed the first decline in exports in five months.

Investors also watched Europe’s attempts to tame its debt crisis. Spain is poised to become the fourth of the 17 euro-area countries to require emergency assistance as the currency bloc’s finance chiefs plan weekend talks on a potential aid request to shore up the nation’s lenders.

The S&P 500 is headed for its best weekly gain since Dec. 23 as China cut its interest rate and European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said officials stand ready to act. Most stocks fell yesterday as an early gain fizzled after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said the central bank will assess the economy before deciding if more stimulus is needed.

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