Monday, June 4, 2012

Asian markets tumble over EU debt crisis, US jobs report

Currency traders monitor exchange rates in a dealing room at the Korea Exchange Bank, Seoul, May 7, 2012

Source: Press TV

Asian shares have sharply tumbled following reports of a gloomy US employment situation as well as concerns over the possibility of a eurozone breakup.

Japan’s market lost over two percent on Monday morning, reaching a level not seen since late 1983, while Hong Kong plummeted over 2.3 percent.

Shanghai was 1.24 percent lower, Sydney skidded 1.84 percent and Seoul lost 2.60 percent.

The falls come as Washington has put the number of jobs created in May at 69,000 - the slowest rise in 12 months. Meanwhile, leaders across the eurozone are facing a political and economic challenge in Greece.

New data released late last week showed more signs that growth is slowing in both China and India, which have until now been relatively bright spots for the global economy.

On top of the alarming jobs outlook in the United States, investors are deeply worried about the eurozone debt crisis. Unemployment in the eurozone has hit a record high of 11 percent.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 2.22 percent on Friday, wiping out its gains for the year, and the main index of the German stock market closed down 3.4 percent.

Greece's political and economic turmoil led to mounting concerns among eurozone members that Athens would not comply with the austerity measures it agreed to with its European neighbors in exchange for the endorsement of the second financial bailout, and would finally leave the 17-nation bloc.

The head of the European Central Bank earlier this week told European Union leaders that the single currency union is unsustainable in its current form.

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