June 1 - Wall Street fell 2 percent as tepid job creation in the private sector provided further evidence of a slowing economic recovery and a Moody's downgrade of Greek debt raised default fears. Conway G. Gittens reports.
PLEASE NOTE: THIS EDIT CONTAINS CONVERTED 4:3 MATERIAL Wall Street slumped more than two percent in the biggest one day sell-off since August as investors grapple with a series of negatives. Greek debt was downgraded deep into junk bond status by Moody's. The ratings agency says there's an even chance Greece will not come out of this debt crisis without a restructuring. In the U.S. - economists were slicing payroll growth forecasts after the private sector posted the smallest job creation in eight months, according to May data from payroll company ADP. And growth in the manufacturing sector hit the brakes last month, according to the Institute for Supply Management. That adds to growing evidence the economic recovery has hit a soft patch, but Bernie McSherry of Cuttone & Company thinks it will be short-lived - blaming the softness on dwindling confidence. SOUNDBITE:BERNIE MCSHERRY, VICE PRESIDENT, CUTTONE AND COMPANY (ENGLISH) SAYING: "You know with the U.S. government arguing amongst themselves about the debt ceiling, with higher gas prices, perhaps the dip in the housing market, there is a lot on people's mind and hopefully we are getting a little bit of relief in terms of prices at the gas pump, maybe that will translate into some improved consumer confidence going forward, we hope." Just look to auto showrooms. Monthly sales at General Motors and Ford were down in May compared to the same time last year as worried consumers put off car buying. Chrysler sales were up due to easy comparisons. Looking at the final numbers: The Dow - down 2.2 percent. S&P 500 and Nasdaq down 2.3 percent. Weak manufacturing across Europe pulled markets there down by a full percent. Conway Gittens, Reuters