Slow Growth Rattles Markets
World markets react to slower than expected job growth.
Today investors are anxiously waiting to see how Wall Street will react to Friday’s disappointing jobs report.
The markets were closed Friday when the Labor Department reported a big slowdown in job growth last month.
We created jobs in March, but not nearly as many as the month before. After several months of progress, this latest report is raising questions about whether the recovery has hit a standstill.
Friday's unemployment report -- half as many jobs created in March as the month before -- drove Asian markets down this morning.
The Nikkei lost one percent. Shanghai's composite index dropped slightly.
The question is whether Wall Street follow suit today.
Republicans blame President Obama. "He's rudderless on the economy. I mean, he doesn't quite know what to do. It's wake up on Monday and try to figure it out," said Governor John Kasich, (R) Ohio.
Democrats came to his defense Sunday, claiming this one report must be put in perspective. "We've had 26 months of economic growth. We're on the right track," proclaimed Senator Dick Durbin, (D) Illinois.
"Do we really want to go back to the economy shrinking at a rate of nine percent, losing 800,000 private sector jobs a month?" asked Senator Kent Conrad, (D) North Dakota.
There are other signs that our economy's still on the mend. Pay is up. So are housing prices in some cities. Inflation's creeping up too - which economists say signals a healthier economy.
And the once-ailing auto industry is experiencing a comeback: "We're seeing more people that are comfortable in their jobs, not as worried about losing their jobs, so they're more likely to spend." Joe Crane/ Hawk Chrysler Dodge Jeep General Manager
And perhaps more likely to invest? We'll see when U.S. Markets open this morning.
Tracie Potts, NBC News.