Wall Street opened lower on Friday after a report showed U.S. employment fell in September for the first time in seven years as Hurricanes Harvey and Irma left displaced workers temporarily unemployed and delayed hiring.
The Labor Department`s closely watched employment report showed nonfarm payrolls decreased by 33,000 jobs last month, the latest indication that the storms undercut economic activity in the third quarter. Economists polled by Reuters had expected jobs to rise by 90,000.
One bright spot was the better-than-expected rise in average wages, up 0.5 percent, compared with estimates of a 0.3 percent increase.
"In any normal month, this print would have sent tremors across global markets, but September was no normal month," said Marcus Bullus, trading director at MB Capital.
"Traders were pricing in a weak print given the severe disruption caused by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and even though it came in far worse than expected, the markets will go into the weekend feeling there is no reason to panic."
At 9:34 a.m. ET (1334 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 27.86 points, or 0.12 percent, at 22,747.53, the S&P 500 was down 4.6 points, or 0.18 percent, at 2,547.47. The Nasdaq Composite was down 13.79 points, or 0.21 percent, at 6,571.57.
The decline could snap this week`s record-setting run for the indexes. The S&P 500 had marked its sixth straight record closing high on Thursday, in large part due to gains in the technology index.
However, on Friday the sector fell 0.3 percent and dragged down the broader index.
Financials - which rose 0.2 percent - was the only gainer among the 11 S&P sectors.
Costco dropped 5.1 percent to $158.50 after the warehouse club retailer reported a fall in gross margins due to an intense price war among grocers. The stock weighed the most on the S&P 500 index.
Synchronoss Technologies jumped nearly 28 percent to $13.66 after the software maker said it would restart buyout talks with top shareholder Siris Capital Partners.
Drug store chain Walgreens Boots Alliance was down nearly 2 percent following a Morgan Stanley downgrade and price target cut.
Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 1,849 to 661. On the Nasdaq, 1,411 issues fell and 842 advanced.
(This article has not been edited by Zeebiz editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)