Stock, Oil Prices Fall As Investors Worry About Growth

Posted September 5th, 2011 at 11:20 am (UTC-5)
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Stock markets declined in Europe and Asia on Monday following disappointing economic reports in the United States and China, the world's two largest economies.

Key European stock indexes plunged between three and five percent, while the closely-watched market in Hong Kong fell almost three percent. U.S. markets were closed for Monday's Labor Day holiday, after falling sharply on Friday.

Analysts said the sell-off is a reaction to Friday's U.S. Labor Department report which showed job growth stalling. The data increased concerns that the United States could lapse back into recession.

The heaviest Asian losses were suffered by companies that rely on export sales to the United States, like major electronics makers Sony, Panasonic and Sharp.

Worries about U.S. growth were compounded by a downbeat report on China's services sector.

Investors speculated that slower growth will cut demand for energy, and oil prices declined on world markets Monday.