Grim Economic Numbers Reverse Early Market Surge
Stocks opened high today, but quickly fell off on a bad manufacturing report
After a morning surge in reaction to the federal debt deal, U.S. markets reversed Monday morning, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the Nasdaq, and the S&P 500 all nosing down. According to Marketwatch, today's Institute for Supply Management report on slower-than-expected manufacturing spurred the decline, with healthcare stocks falling the farthest in the S&P. The ISM "said its index of national factory activity fell to 50.9 percent from 55.3 the month before," Reuters reported. Economists surveyed by the news service had put the expectation for the month's figure at 54.9. According to Forbes, July's figure was the lowest in two years, since just at the tail end of the recession. Reuters points out that it shows U.S. manufacturing just barely still in a growth stage: "A reading below 50 indicates contraction in the manufacturing sector, while a number above 50 means expansion." It hasn't been a good month for economic numbers, with the news in early July of June's dismal jobs report. But hey, gold is up, so if selling your wedding ring is starting to look appealing, you'll probably get a good deal.