NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Stocks sank deep into the red as markets sorted through a range of worries, including Friday's jobs report.
A global bond rout continued, Greece received an unexpected extension to debt repayments and a meeting among the world's largest oil producers loomed. If that wasn't causing enough jitters, investors also were awaiting the May employment situation which will be closely watched for signs the economy is recovering after a disappointing first quarter.
Those macro forces were enough to send benchmark indexes into a tailspin. The S&P 500 was down 0.9%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.91% and the Nasdaq slid 0.79%.
The global bond rout continued unabated with German 10-year Bund yields hitting a high of 0.998%, a level not seen since September 2014, before pulling back to 0.832%. Likewise, U.S. 10-year bond yields jumped to 2.425% before coming back to settle at 2.3052%. The bond market has been in focus since European Central Bank President Mario Draghi made comments on Wednesday that volatility would remain.
Greece will miss its repayment due Friday of 303.3 million euros to the IMF and instead repay its four debt obligations in a lump sum at the end of the month. This will allow the debt-ravaged country more time in which to negotiate for extra debt relief from its European creditors. Greece needs to repay the IMF nearly 1.6 billion euros ($1.75 billion) this month.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will meet in Vienna on Friday to discuss current production levels and expectations for the global oil market which has seen prices plummet since last July. Economists widely expect members to keep production levels at record highs. West Texas Intermediate crude closed down 2.8% to $58 a barrel.
"The petroleum markets are focusing more closely on OPEC ahead of Friday's summit, with growing concern that a likely quota rollover will leave the global market with a significant ongoing surplus," said Citi analyst Timothy Evans.
The energy sector was one of the worst performers on Thursday. Exxon Mobil(XOM) - Get Report, Chevron(CVX) - Get Report, Chesapeake Energy(CHK) - Get Report, PetroChina(PTR) - Get Report, and BP(BP) - Get Report were all lower, while the Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLE) - Get Report fell 1.3%.
The IMF said Thursday the Federal Reserve should wait until there are stronger signs of wage or price inflation in its annual review of the U.S. economy. The body forecasts that will likely happen in the first half of 2016. The Fed is widely expected to raise rates from near-zero crises levels in September.
"Based on the mission's macroeconomic forecast, and barring upside surprises to growth and inflation, this would put lift-off into the first half of 2016," the IMF said in its report.
Fed Governor Daniel Tarullo raised doubts over whether it would be appropriate to raise rates this year. he U.S. economy appeared to have "lost some momentum" and that it may not recover as quickly from a first-quarter slowdown as expected, Tarullo said at a conference in New York.
Initial jobless claims in the U.S. fell by 8,000 to 276,000 in the week ended May 30, hovering at 15-year lows. That proved a promising sign ahead of Friday's May jobs report.
"The trend in claims, below the pre-recession trough for weeks now, remains in line with our forecast for continued tightening in labor market slack ahead and with our expectation for another solid payrolls print for May," said BNP Paribas analyst Derek Lindsey.
Economists hope to see continued strength in the labor market, proof that March's disappointing number was an aberration in a weak first quarter.
The data "will go a long way toward helping validate if the Fed is correct in its assumption that a lot of the things that negatively impacted the first quarter were transitory," said Eric Wiegand, senior portfolio manager at U.S. Bank, in a call.
Economists expect the economy to add 210,000 jobs in May with the unemployment rate remaining unchanged at 5.4%. Hourly earnings are forecast to increase 0.2% month on month. The Labor Department will release the data on Friday, June 5.
Opko Health(OPK) - Get Report fell more than 15% after announcing it will acquire Bio-Reference Laboratories (BRLI) for $52.58 a share or around $1.47 billion. The all-stock deal will see Bio-Reference shareholders receive 2.75 shares of Opko for every share they hold.
Costco(COST) - Get Report shares dropped 1% after the warehouse retailer reported flat comparable-store sales in May. Comparable sales climbed 2% in the U.S., while international sales fell 4% due to the effects of gas prices and currency headwinds.
J.M. Smucker(SJM) - Get Report shares were down 3.7% after the company reported a mixed quarter. Net income of 98 cents a share narrowly missed estimates, while revenue of $1.44 billion surged 17.1% from a year earlier. Sales saw a big boost due to its fourth-quarter acquisition of pet foods brand Big Heart.
The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a complaint against bogus company PTG Capital Partners and its principal Nedko Nedev, a resident of Bulgaria. Nedev allegedly was behind an SEC filing through the EDGAR system which purported a false bid on May 14 for Avon Products(AVP) - Get Report.
Dish Network(DISH) - Get Report spiked more than 4% on reports the company is discussing a potential merger with T-Mobile(TMUS) - Get Report. Discussions are in their early stages, according to The Wall Street Journal. T-Mobile shares added 2.7%.
U.S. productivity in the first quarter fell by a revised 3.1% annual pace, according to the latest government data, a far steeper decline than a first estimate of 1.9%. Economists expected the measure to be revised to a 3% drop as the U.S. economy struggled with winter weather and West Coast port closures.