Wall Street hit by job reports

January 10th, 2009 - 1:08 am ICT by IANS  

New York, Jan 9 (Xinhua) Wall Street opened lower Friday, as the US government reported that the unemployment rate increased to a nearly 16-year high and wholesale inventories continued to decrease. The US Labor Department reported that the unemployment rate rose from 6.7 percent in November to 7.2 percent in December, the highest level since early 1993, as employers slashed 524,000 jobs in the last month of 2008. Economist had expected the rate of seven percent.

The US Commerce Department reported that wholesale inventories dropped 0.6 percent in November and sales were down a record 7.1 percent. The decline indicated that businesses are struggling against the severe recession.

The Dow Jones fell 92.15 to 8,650.31. Broader indexes also moved lower. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index lost 13.56 to 890.17; and the Nasdaq slipped 33.31 to 1,583.70.

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