US stocks drop despite solid jobs report

Wall Street stocks opened lower on Friday despite a solid US jobs report.
Wall Street stocks opened lower on Friday despite a solid US jobs report.PHOTO: AFP

NEW YORK (AFP) - Wall Street stocks opened lower Friday as negative sentiment from overseas equity markets dominated despite a solid US jobs report.

Five minutes into trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average stood at 17,580.86, up 104.23 points (0.59 per cent).

The broad-based S&P 500 fell 14.26 (0.69 per cent) to 2,045.48, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 34.96 (0.72 per cent) to 4,834.89.

The US economy added 215,000 jobs in March, slightly more than the 200,000 projected by analysts.

But analysts said sentiment was marred by Japanese data that showed confidence among manufacturers at a three-year low.

The Nikkei lost 3.6 per cent, while bourses in Paris and Frankfurt were both off about 2.7 per cent.

Oil prices were also sharply lower on reports that Saudi Arabia was backing away from a potential agreement to limit oil production.