* 156,000 jobs added in September vs. est. 175,000
* Pound 'flash crash' stirs Brexit fears
* Honeywell, PPG weigh on S&P
* Indexes down: Dow 0.51 pct, S&P 0.62 pct, 0.66 pct
(Updates to early afternoon trading)
By Noel Randewich
Oct 7 U.S. stocks fell on Friday after a "flash
crash" in sterling fueled Brexit worries and a
weaker-than-expected September jobs report did not sway
expectations for a Federal Reserve interest rate hike by
It was latest in two weeks of what some investors described
as directionless trading, with uncertainty around a tight race
for the White House weighing on sentiment ahead of the Nov. 8
Data showed U.S. employment growth unexpectedly slowed for a
third month in September and the jobless rate rose. Nonfarm
payrolls rose 156,000, down from a gain of 167,000 jobs in
August, the Labor Department said.
"It's strong enough that you're not worried about the U.S.
slipping into an economic slump," said Michael Jones, an
investment officer at RiverFront Investment Group in Richmond,
Virginia. "But it's not so strong that it precipitates immediate
action from the Fed."
Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer said the jobs report was
close to a "Goldilocks" number, adding that the U.S. economy has
been remarkable in reducing unemployment.
Worries on Wall Street about the potential fallout from
Britain's planned exit from the European Union returned after a
brief 10 percent dive in the pound in what traders called a
"flash crash" that knocked the British currency to a 31-year
"Brexit so far has been a non-event, but they also have not
started to negotiate with the EU. How is that eventually going
to look?," said Warren West, principal at Greentree Brokerage
Services in Philadelphia.
At 1:04 pm ET, the Dow Jones industrial average was
down 0.51 percent at 18,175.81 points and the S&P 500 had
lost 0.62 percent to 2,147.37.
The Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.66 percent to
Ten of the 11 major S&P 500 indexes were lower, with
materials falling 2.09 percent and industrials
down 1.56 1.11 percent.
Utilities were the only gaining S&P index.
Honeywell's 8.3 percent drop weighed on industrials,
after the aero parts supplier lowered the upper end of its 2016
sales and profit forecast range. The stock was also the biggest
drag on the S&P 500.
Chemical company PPG dropped 9.1 percent after
forecasting a third-quarter loss.
Tyson Foods plunged 9.08 percent after Pivotal
Capital downgraded its stock to "sell" from "buy".
Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a
2.97-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 2.91-to-1 ratio favored decliners.
The S&P 500 posted 4 new 52-week highs and 4 new lows; the
Nasdaq Composite recorded 42 new highs and 34 new lows.
(Additional reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru;
Editing by Meredith Mazzilli)