Wall Street flat after weak economic data

November 4th, 2008 - 12:37 am ICT by IANS  

New York, Nov 3 (Xinhua) Wall Street fluctuated in a narrow range Monday, showing signs of stability after the US government posted weak economic data and borrowing costs further declined. The US Institute for Supply Management reported that the manufacturing sector further contracted in October. The manufacturing index came to 38.9 in October, its lowest level in 26 years.

Economists had expected the index might drop to 41 from 43.5 in September. Boeing fell on the report and as Goldman Sachs added the planemaker to its “conviction sell” list.

Meanwhile, the US Commerce Department reported that construction spending fell by 0.3 percent in September, less than the 0.8 percent decline economists had expected.

Investors also awaited vehicle sales figures from the auto industry for October, which is probably even weaker than in September.

However, the London interbank offered rate, or Libor, that banks charge for three-month loans in dollars, dropped 17 basis points to 2.86 percent Monday, the lowest level since Sep 17. It was the 16th consecutive drop of the rate. Morgan Stanley rallied in morning trading.

The Dow Jones rose 7.48 points to 9,332.49. Broader indexes also made slight movement. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index dropped 0.99 to 967.76 and the Nasdaq rose 7.78 to 1,728.73.

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