Sun, Dec 05, 2004 - Page 10 News List

European markets weaken on concern over US jobs report

AFP , LONDON

European stock markets closed lower on Friday as a worse-than-expected US jobs report heightened concerns over the strength of the world's largest economy and further weakened the US dollar.

The London FTSE 100 index slipped 0.07 percent to close the day at 4,747.9 points, the Frankfurt DAX 30 shed 0.18 percent at 4,208.87 points and the Paris CAC 40 fell 0.73 percent to 3,783.51 points. The euro stood at US$1.3393, easing back from a record high of US$1.3399 in intraday trading. The euro's fresh surge against the dollar as the data filtered into the market compounded negative sentiment, dealers said.

US nonfarm payrolls increased a disappointing 112,000 in last month, well below economists' expectations of a 204,000 increase, while the unemployment rate dipped to 5.4 percent, according to the US Labor Department.

By the close of the London stock market, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 27.40 points at 10,612.50, while the tech-rich NASDAQ was ahead by 9.42 points at 2,152.99.

In London, mining stocks were to blame for most of the FTSE 100's losses as sliding metal prices and cautious comments from UBS weighed on the sector.

UBS cut its target price on Anglo American and Rio Tinto, pushing the two shares lower. Anglo American fell 1.52 percent to £12.35 and Rio Tinto lost 1.64 percent at £14.96.

Elsewhere in Europe, the Amsterdam AEX dropped 0.28 percent to 343.48 points, the Brussels BEL-20 shed 0.36 percent at 2,895.06, the Madrid IBEX-35 slid 0.27 percent to 8,787.9 and the Milan MIB 30 gave up 0.20 percent at 29,908.0.

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