U.S. stocks and exchange traded funds (ETFs) retreated in morning trading on a weak jobs report, which underscored that the economy is still very much struggling.
The Labor Department reported that employers cut a 467,000 jobs in June, a larger-than expected number, sending the unemployment rate up to a 26-year high of 9.5%. This further supports the fact that economic relief isn’t in sight for the near future. Some experts believe that the unemployment rate will climb as high as 11% by year-end.
The situation in Europe is just as bleak, as the unemployment rate in the Eurozone hit a seasonally adjusted 9.5% as well. Unemployment in the 16 countries that use the Euro surpassed the 15 million mark.
In the automotive world, car sales by U.S. carmakers hit the brakes in the month of June. Overall annualized unit sales fell short of Wall Street’s 10 million forecast, coming in at 9.69 million. Of the large automakers, Ford (F) posted better results than all others. Automotive analysts hope that the federal government’s planned voucher program will ignite a spark in a much-battered industry.