Economic Data, G-20 Meeting, Greece Drive Stock Market Lower

Markets dropped slightly lower today on G-20 news, mixed economic reports, and Grecian woes.

After the confusing market action on Wall Street this week, it seems that markets cannot make up their minds after last week’s euphoric rally and Euro-zone compromise. It appeared that markets were on a meteoric rise that could have possibly carried us into Christmas, however Prime Minister Papandreou’s referendum call for Greece and MF Global’s bankruptcy soured the mood.

The SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) dropped half a percent today; the fall likely represents the current troubles of MF Global Holdings (NYSE:MF), which filed for bankruptcy earlier this week. MF Global has major holdings in commodities, including gold. Despite the MF Global mess, however, the United States Oil Fund LP ETF (NYSEARCA:USO) registered a .4% increase.

Members of the G-20 did not come up with a compromise to help the Euro Zone’s new plan, I would imagine that Prime Minister Papandreou’s referendum call and vote of no confidence did not help the discussion along. It seems that policay makers across the world are stuck between doing the impossible and some very difficult choices.

And lastly, economic reports were mixed, at best, as unemployment dropped from 9.1% to 9% for October, and non-farm payrolls dropped from 158,000 in September to 80,000 in October. If one tenth of a percent less unemployment means improvement, then today’s reports were a mixed bag at best, and the light at the end of the tunnel might be flickering.

Bottom Line: It seems that the markets today and this week do not know how to respond to continued European woes and MF Global, and that the so-called “Santa Rally” that everyone wants to ride into the end of the year might have to wait a little longer.
Global Stock Market Summary:

S&P 500 SPDR (SPY): -0.77, -.061%

PowerShares QQQ Trust (QQQ)

SPDR DJ Industrial Average ETF (DIA): -.59, -.49%

Russel 2000 iShares (IWM): -0.37, -0.49%

SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) -0.87, -0.51%

United States Oil Fund LP (NYSEARCA:USO): +0.14, +0.39%

Disclosure: No positions in ETFs or stocks discussed in this article.

John Nyaradi is the author of The ETF Investing Premium Newsletter.