Stocks edge lower after weak manufacturing report

December 4, 2012 • Business

FILE – In this Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012, file photo, Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Stocks are rising in early trading on Wall Street, Monday, Dec. 3, 2012, following European markets higher, following news that China’s manufacturing sector grew last month for the first time in more than a year. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks edged lower on Wall Street Monday after a surprisingly weak manufacturing report heightened concern that fiscal deadlock in Washington is already hurting the economy.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 59.98 points to close at 12,965.60. The Standard and Poor’s 500 dropped 6.72 points to 1,409.46. The Nasdaq composite was down 8.04 points to 3,002.20

U.S. manufacturing declined in November to its weakest level since July 2009, the Institute for Supply Management reported. The ISM’s index fell to 49.5 from 51.7 a month earlier, below the 51.2 reading forecast by analysts. Any number below 50 on the scale means that manufacturing is contracting. Businesses expressed concerns about the “fiscal cliff,” a series of sharp government spending cuts and tax Login to read more

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