24 Sep 2010

Markets down after benefit numbers rise

8:42 am on 24 September 2010

Stocks on Wall Street fell on Thursday after jobless benefit numbers in the United States jumped sharply in August.

The Dow Jones Index lost 76 points, to close at 10,662. The Nasdaq Composite lost seven points, to close at 2327.

The jobless numbers, coupled with a fall in mortgage approvals in Britain, weak eurozone manufacturing data and a contraction in the Irish economy also knocked European markets.

In London the FTSE 100 ended on 5,547, down four points.

Stock markets were closed for a public holiday in Japan. Hong Kong markets were also closed.

Across the Tasman, the Australian 200 Index closed up eight points, at 4633.

The NZX 50 closed down 8 points, at 3228 on turnover of $78 million.

At 8.10am on Friday, the New Zealand dollar was trading at 73.00 US cents, 76.80 Australian cents, 46.55 pence, 61.60 yen and 0.5480 euro. The Trade Weighted Index was at 66.48.

Brent crude oil was trading at $US78.46 per barrel and gold was trading at $US1293.75 per ounce.