Stocks are held back by weak payroll report

AP News
Posted: Apr 03, 2013 10:06 AM
Stocks are held back by weak payroll report

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are edging lower shortly after the opening bell on Wall Street following weak surveys on hiring and service businesses.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 35 points, or 0.2 percent, to 14,627 early Wednesday.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index was off six points at 1,563. The Nasdaq composite was down nine at 3,245.

Payroll processor ADP said U.S. companies added fewer jobs in March compared with the previous month as construction firms held off on hiring.

A report on the service sector, which includes finance, health care and retail, also came in weaker than economists had expected.

Agricultural products company Monsanto rose 1 percent to $105 after reporting a 22 percent jump in earnings thanks to strong sales of seeds.