- The Washington Times - Friday, June 12, 2009

Wall Street posted afternoon losses Friday following a report showing U.S. consumers are still confident about the economy recovering, but not to the extent they were in past months.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 19.84 points, to 8,768.57. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500-stock Index was at 941.38, down 3.51 points, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq was down 2.35 points, to 1,842.53.

The Reuters-University of Michigan report showed consumer confidence increased in June to a nine-month high.

However, the increase was just 0.3 points, compared to a 7.8 points from March to April and 3.6 from April to May. The report showed consumers are concerned about inflation and unemployment.

U.S. markets have increased more than 30 percent since hitting 12-year lows in early March. The S&P is up nearly 40 points and the Dow is up 34 points.

However, market gains have stalled this week over investor concerns about inflation, rising interest rates and the prices of oil and other commodities.

Bond prices increased slightly Friday. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note, which moves opposite the price, fell to 3.79 percent from 3.86 percent Thursday.

Oil prices have steadily increased since January, but the price of light crude dropped 78 cents, to $71.90, on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Gold prices dropped and the dollar fell against the Euro and British pound.

Overseas, Japan’s Nikkei stock average rose 1.55 percent. Britain’s FTSE 100 fell 0.55 percent, Germany’s DAX index fell 0.74 percent, and France’s CAC-40 fell 0.26 percent.

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