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Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ), AT&T Inc. (T): Poor Jobs Data Hurts Investors’ Confidence

This morning payroll processor ADP reported an upward revision to its February payroll figures from 198,000 to 237,000. However, ADP also reported that private employers added only 158,000 jobs in March, which was well below the 200,000 most economists were expecting. The report has made market participants ever more anxious for Friday’s jobs report from the Department of Labor and triggered investors to take profits this afternoon.

Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ)

As of 12:45 p.m. EDT the Dow Jones Industrial Average has lost 76 points, or 0.52%, while the S&P 500 and NASDAQ are performing worse, losing 0.8% each. But not all of the Dow’s losers today are a result of the ADP report.

The biggest Dow loser’s today are unfortunately the banks. Shares of Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) are both heading lower.Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) is down 3.3%, while JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) has lost 2.2%. The Mortgage Bankers Association reported that weak refinancing last week caused a 4% decline in home loan applications. While the financial crisis was essentially a result of a massive amount of bad mortgage debt that ultimately led to the collapse of a number of financial institutions large and small, for better or worse mortgage loans have once again become a large part of the industry’s business. While this may be only a temporary slowdown in loan applications, investors should keep an eye on this data.

Shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) are down by 1.2% after the company denied that it would be partnering with AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) to acquire Vodafone Group Plc (ADR) (NASDAQ:VOD). Reports said Verizon and AT&T would purchase Vodafone for $245 billion and then split the company. Verizon would take Vodafone’s 45% stake in Verizon Wireless, and AT&T would receive Vodafone’s operations outside the U.S. While Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) has denied these claims, the company said it would still consider buying Vodafone Group Plc (ADR) (NASDAQ:VOD)’s stake in the Verizon Wireless venture. As of this writing, shares of AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) are down 0.6%.

The article Poor Jobs Data Hurts Investors’ Confidence originally appeared on and is written by Matt Thalman.

Fool contributor Matt Thalman owns shares of Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE:JPM). The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase & Co. Check back Monday through Friday as Matt explains what caused the Dow’s winners and losers of the day, and every Saturday for a weekly recap. Follow Matt on Twitter: @mthalman5513.

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