US stocks open lower following weak factory data in Europe and Asia; GM sinks

Stocks moved lower in early trading Thursday, sapped by gloomy manufacturing data from Europe, China and Japan.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average fell 23 points, or 0.1 percent, to 18,013 as of 10 a.m. Eastern. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell three points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,105 and the Nasdaq composite fell five points, or 0.1 percent, to 5,030.

WEAK SURVEYS: A survey of European manufacturing and services fell in April, due to particular weakness in France and Germany, the continent's two largest economies.

At the same time, HSBC said manufacturing in China slowed to its lowest point in a year in April. The latest sign that growth is faltering in the world's second-biggest economy will add to pressure on policymakers to act to stave off a sharper slowdown.

A similar survey in Japan indicated a third straight monthly decline in manufacturing, suggesting industries are still not in full recovery mode after the recession brought on by a sales tax hike last April.

EUROPE: European markets mostly fell. Germany's DAX lost 1 percent, France's CAC-40 declined 0.8 percent, and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 edged up 0.2 percent.

STALLED: General Motors fell $1.24, or 3.5 percent, to $35.85 after the company reported a profit short of analysts' expectations. Like other manufacturers, GM's earnings were impacted by a strong U.S. dollar.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose $1.01 to $57.17 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

CURRENCIES, BONDS: The dollar rose to 119.99 yen from 119.98 yen late Wednesday. The euro edged higher, to $1.0744 from $1.0725. Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.97 percent from 1.98 percent late Wednesday.