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Stock market news: September 23, 2019

Emily McCormick
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U.S. stocks ended mixed Monday after opening lower, as solid results on domestic economic growth helped offset concerns of a global growth slowdown stoked by weak data out of Europe.

Here’s where the market settled at the end of regular equity trading:

  • S&P 500 (^GSPC): -0.01%, or 0.28 points

  • Dow (^DJI): +0.06%, or 15.19 points

  • Nasdaq (^IXIC): -0.06%, or 5.21 points

  • U.S. crude oil prices (CL=F): +0.67% to $58.48 per barrel

  • 10-year Treasury yield (^TNX): -4.2 bps to 1.711%

  • Gold (GC=F): +1.1% to $1,531.70 per ounce

Activity in Germany’s key manufacturing sector sank in September to the lowest level in more than a decade, IHS Markit said Monday in its advance report for the month. The country’s manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) fell to a reading of 41.4, well into contractionary territory below the neutral level of 50 and consensus expectations for a reading of 44.0. Germany’s composite PMI, which includes both manufacturing and services industries, fell to a near seven-year low of 49.1.

“The numbers are simply awful. All the uncertainty around trade wars, the outlook for the car industry and Brexit are paralyzing order books, with September seeing the worst performance from the sector since the depths of the financial crisis in 2009,” Phil Smith, principal economist at IHS Markit, said in a statement.

The results for the eurozone’s largest economy contributed to a weaker advance report for the entire single-currency bloc in September.

Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., September 18, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., September 18, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

The eurozone’s composite PMI fell to a more than six-year low of 50.4 for the month, a hair above the level required to indicate expansion, from 51.9 the month prior. With a September reading of 45.6 from 47.0, the euro area’s manufacturing sector fell deeper into contraction for the month. The service-related industries expanded at a slower pace, with a reading of 52.0 in September down from 53.5 in August.

“The eurozone economy is close to stalling a a deepening manufacturing downturn shows further signs of spreading to the services sector,” Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit, said in a statement.

In the U.S., however, manufacturing results were more in-line with expectations. IHS Markit reported in its advance reading Monday that U.S. manufacturing activity rebounded in September, with the sector’s PMI rising to 51.0 for the month from 50.3 in August. This was ahead of consensus expectations for a reading of 50.4.

Activity in the U.S. services sector came up slightly short, however. The U.S. service sector PMI came in at 50.9 for September, an improvement from August’s read of 50.7, but below consensus expectations for a rebound to 51.4.

Meanwhile, investors parsed through new developments for U.S.-China trade discussions. On Friday, stocks reversed course and ended the session lower following news that mid-level Chinese negotiators who had met with their U.S. counterparts in Washington, D.C., would not be meeting with farms in Montana and Nebraska as originally planned.

While the change in schedule was largely inferred to have been due to a cancellation on the Chinese delegation’s part, new reports suggest otherwise. The U.S. reportedly requested that Chinese negotiators not meet with farmers in the heartland due to unspecified domestic reasons, Bloomberg reported Sunday, citing unnamed people familiar with the matter.

High-level meetings between the U.S. and China are set to take place in Washington during the second week of October, the Bloomberg report added, corroborating other recent reports suggesting the two sides would meet again next month.

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Emily McCormick is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter: @emily_mcck

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