Hot Topic NBR Focus: GMO
Hot Topic NBR Focus: GMO
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Weekend markets: Stocks fall on Greece default rumours

Nevil Gibson
Sat, 10 Sep 2011

Stocks on Wall Street closed sharply lower amid fresh worries of a Greek default, though Greece's government dismissed the rumours as "rubbish."

In other news affecting the markets, Germany's European Central Bank executive board member Jürgen Stark suddenly resigned over issues related to solving the debt crisis, while President Barack Obama's $US447 billion jobs package raised doubts whether it was too big be passed.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbled 303.68 points, or 2.69%, to 10,992.13, its fifth drop out of the last six sessions.

The increasing possibility of a Greek default sent the Dow tumbling as much as 360 points before it recovered some losses in the final hour of trading.

All 30 Dow components closed in the red. The blue-chip Dow finished the holiday-shortened week down 2.2%, its sixth weekly decline out of the past seven.

The S&P 500 index shed 2.67% to 1154.23, led lower by energy, material and financial stocks. All 10 of the S&P 500's sectors fell.

The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite dropped 2.42% to 2467.99.

Other markets: Europe, Asia down
Banking stocks plunged, giving European markets a harsh end to the week.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index skidded 2.6% to close at 224.59 Friday and finished lower for the week.

In London, the FTSE 100 index fell 2.4% to 5214.65 and in Frankfurth the DAX 30 index fell 4% to 5189.93.

PSA Peugeot Citroen dropped 7.3%, dragging the CAC 40 index down 3.6% to close at 2974.59 in Paris.

Asian markets ended mostly lower, with manufacturers and property stocks among the hardest hit.

Japan revised down its April-June gross domestic product to a 0.5% contraction compared with a 0.3% fall in the preliminary reading. The Nikkei Stock Average finished down 0.6% at 8737.66.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index fell 0.2% to 19866.63 and, in Soeul, the Kospi lost 1.8% to end at 1812.93.

Commodities: Oil down, gold up
Crude-oil futures lost 2%, hit by fresh fears of economic turmoil in Europe that sent equities tumbling and the dollar higher.

In New York, light, sweet crude oil for October delivery settled $US1.81 lower at $US87.24 a barrel. The contract traded in a range of $US85.64 to $US87.75 and rose 79USc over the week.

Brent crude for October delivery lost $US1.78, or 1.6%, to settle at $US112.77 on the ICE and was up 0.4% for the week.

Gold futures finished slightly higher. Gold for September delivery rose $US2, or 0.1%, to settle at $US1856.40 an ounce in New York and was down 0.9% for the week.

Currencies: Euro plunges
The euro tumbled to a 10-year low against the yen and a six-month low against the US dollar at $US1.3626 from $US1.3882 late on Thursday. It traded as low as ¥105.30, its lowest point since January 2001, from ¥107.57.

The US dollar was at ¥77.58 from ¥77.50 rose more than 1% against the Swiss franc to 0.8839 franc from 0.8756 franc.

The UK pound traded at $US1.5861 from $US1.5958.

Nevil Gibson
Sat, 10 Sep 2011
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Weekend markets: Stocks fall on Greece default rumours