STOCK MARKET TUMBLES ON GRIM OVERSEAS INDICATORS

STOCK MARKET TUMBLES ON GRIM OVERSEAS INDICATORS

THE horror dive that saw Australian stocks lose more than $100 billion in value last month continued today with the S&P/ASX200 index today plunging below the 4000-mark for the first time since November.

Factors including America’s worsening unemployment rate and uncertainty over the Eurozone delivered a 1.75 per cent blow to the Australian financial market as the S&P/ASX200 index dwindled to 3992.9 points in morning trading.

The broader All Ordinaries index suffered nearly a 2 per cent drop to 4042.2 points.

The plunge was not unexpected after US figures released on Friday showed an increased jobless rate there of 8.2 per cent. French, German and British markets dropped 3, 2 and 1 per cent respectively on the data.

By comparison, the Australian unemployment rate decreased by 20 percentage points to 4.9 per cent in April.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ latest business indicators, released today, show wages grew 2.1 per cent and corporate gross operating profits plunged 4 per cent during the 2012 March quarter.

Manufacturing sales of goods and services declined 0.4 per cent while wholesale trade sales jumped 1.2 per cent during the period. Inventories held by businesses were up 0.8 per cent with their worth being impacted by valuation changes.

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