Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Superior Gold Group - Stocks fall, euro at 4-yr low, oil dips

Stocks fell for a third day on Monday on growing concerns that Europe's debt problems will hamper a global rebound. The Dow Jones industrial average fell about 80 points in late morning trading. The Dow fell 81.4 points, or 0.8%, to 10,538.6. It has fallen seven of the last nine days.

Stocks fell after the euro, which is used by 16 countries in Europe, fell to a four-year low. Investors are questioning whether steep budget cuts in countries including Greece, Spain and Portugal will hinder an economic recovery in Europe and in turn, the US traders are also concerned that loan defaults could ripple through to banks in stronger countries like Germany and France.

The austerity measures are required under a nearly $1 trillion bailout programme the European Union and International Monetary Fund agreed to last week. The rescue package provides access to cheap loans for European countries facing mounting debt problems.

The euro fell to as low as $1.223 early Monday before moving higher. The plunging euro has been driving trading around the globe in recent days. The weakness in the euro has helped boost the value of safe-haven investments like the dollar, Treasuries and gold. It has also driven commodities like oil lower.

Oil fell below $70 a barrel for the first time since February. Oil is priced in dollars so a stronger dollar deters investment in oil. Crude oil fell $1.76 to $69.8 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. That hit shares of energy companies.

A disappointing report on regional manufacturing from the New York Federal Reserve weighed on sentiment. A forecast from home-improvement retailer Lowe's Cos also fell short of expectations. The questions about Europe overshadowed other news and dominated trading. Investors in the US who had been growing more confident about a rebound in this country now are questioning whether the problems in Europe will disrupt a recovery.