Stocks slip, erasing an early gain; insurers sink

AP News
Posted: Nov 02, 2012 12:01 PM
Stocks slip, erasing an early gain; insurers sink

Stocks are drifting lower on Wall Street in midday trading, giving up an early gain driven by a strong jobs report.

Insurers plunged as traders considered the potential costs of Superstorm Sandy.

Shortly before noon, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 40 points at 13,192. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell three to 1,425. The Nasdaq dropped 10 to 3,009.

The Dow rose 57 points in the first minute of trading, but the gains evaporated quickly. The Labor Department said employers added 171,000 jobs last month, while the unemployment rate ticked up to 7.9 percent.

Insurers fell as traders assessed their exposure to the catastrophic storm that ravaged the East Coast. AIG dropped 6 percent, Arch Capital Group 5 percent and Hartford Financial 3 percent.