Escalating sovereign debt problems in Europe (mainly Greece , Portugal and Spain) and an unexpected rise in jobless claims put investors on the defensive just ahead of Friday’s crucial payrolls report.
ecoThe DOW briefly fell below the 10,000 mark as stocks suffered their worst losses in more than nine months. NIKKEI was down 2.6% at 1.30 PM. The euro sank to the lowest level in more than eight months against the dollar and headed for a fourth-straight weekly drop versus the greenback and yen. The European currency dropped to $1.3670, the lowest level since May 20, before trading at $1.3719 at 12:43 p.m. in Tokyo compared with $1.3723 in New York.
Countries on the fringe, including Greece, Portugal, Spain and Ireland, are having trouble paying for years of debt-driven expansion.