January 7, 2009

U.S. markets down Wednesday morning

U.S. stocks indexes were lower Wednesday morning after Alcoa Inc. said it would shed 13,500 jobs.

Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc., an international outplacement consultancy, said December's layoff announcements were a record for the month, while ADP and Macroeconomic Advisors said 693,000 non-farm jobs were lost in December.

In midmorning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average dropped 120.35 points, or 1.33 percent, to 8,894.75. The Standard & Poor's 500 fell 1.46 percent, 13.66 points, to 921.72. The Nasdaq composite index lost 28.98 points, 1.75 percent, to 1,623.40.

The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury bond fell 8/32 to yield 2.484 percent.

The euro rose to $1.367, compared to Tuesday's $1.3522. Against the Japanese yen, the dollar fell to 93.02 yen, down from Tuesday's 93.85 yen.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei average gained 158.40 points to 9,239.24, up 1.74 percent.