Markets closed down today:
▼ Dow: -0.96 percent
▼ Nasdaq: -1.30 percent
▼ S&P: -0.94 percent
▼ Gold: up -1.27 percent to $1,581.00 an ounce
▼ Silver: up -2.16 percent to settle at $27.03
▼ Oil: -3.16 percent
Markets were down because:
Investors abandoned stocks Friday after the U.S. government reported that only 80,000 jobs were created in June, the third straight month of weak hiring.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 124.20 points to close at 12,772.47. The loss wiped out the Dow's gain for the week.
The reluctance of U.S. employers to add jobs shows that the economy is still struggling three years after the recession officially ended. An average of just 75,000 jobs were created every month in the April-June quarter, far below the 226,000 created every month in the first three months of the year.
Stocks dropped sharply on Wall Street, Friday, July 6, 2012, after the U.S. government reported that only 80,000 jobs were created in June, the third straight month of weak hiring. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)
The anemic jobs report led investors to shift money into low-risk assets. The price of the 10-year Treasury note rose, sending its yield down to 1.55 percent from 1.60 percent late Thursday. The dollar rose against the euro.
The sluggish growth in American jobs comes at a time when the global economy is also losing pace. Central banks in Europe and China took action Thursday to prop up their sliding economies.
The new signs of economic sluggishness around the world sent commodities prices lower. Crude oil dropped $2.77, or 3 percent, to $84.45 a barrel. The U.S. is the world's biggest oil consumer, and the prospect of lower demand pushed down prices.
Energy stocks followed the price of oil lower. Peabody Energy fell $1.27, or close to 5 percent, to $24.86, while Alpha Natural Resources declined 60 cents, or 6.5 percent, to $8.67.
In other trading on Wall Street, the Standard & Poor's 500 slid 12.90 points, or 0.9 percent, to 1,354.68 and the Nasdaq composite fell 38.79 points, or 1.3 percent, to 2,937.33.
European markets also lost ground on Friday. A week after investors welcomed an agreement among European leaders to help Spain and Italy, the borrowing rates of both countries rose again. That means bond investors are less willing to loan those countries money at favorable rates.
The yield on the 10-year Spanish government bond rose 0.22 percentage point to 6.96 percent earlier in the day. That's a very high level and could eventually force Spain to seek more financial support from its neighbors in Europe.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.