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Stocks Extend Weeklong Tumble, Euro Slides, Treasuries Rally

• Bloomberg
A weeklong selloff in stocks deepened as reports in the U.S. raised doubts about the strength of the economic recovery and leaders in Europe struggled to contain the region’s debt crisis. Commodities tumbled, the euro plunged and Treasuries soared.

The losses pushed the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index down 2.8 percent to 1,084.28 at 10:37 a.m. in New York, a move below the 200-day moving average level that traders who base decisions on price charts say could trigger more declines. The MSCI World Index of developed nations’ stocks fell for a sixth day. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index plunged 3.2 percent. The euro weakened against the dollar, trading near the lowest in four years. Ten- year Treasury yields sank to the lowest levels of the year, dropping 15 basis points to 3.2 percent.

U.S. jobless claims unexpectedly increased to 471,000 last week and the Conference Board’s index of leading economic indicators fell 0.1 percent. European finance officials meet in Brussels a day before the German parliament votes on the country’s share of a $1 trillion bailout to backstop the euro in the wake of a worsening sovereign debt crisis.

“As investors you feel like you got hit by the pitch in 2008-2009 because of significantly underestimating the contagion of the subprime mortgage market,” said David Sowerby, a Bloomfield Hills, Michigan-based money manager at Loomis Sayles & Co., which oversees $140 billion. “Because that experience is so recent it’s exacerbating the whole European crisis.”

S&P 500 Correction

The S&P 500 extended its plunge from a 19-month high on April 23 to more than 10 percent, a retreat known as a correction. The index has pared its rally from a 12-year low in March 2009 to 60 percent.


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