(REUTERS) -- U.S. stocks fell on Thursday as encouraging reports on the labor market were not enough to offset concerns about the Eurozone's debt crisis.
Financial stocks were the top decliners in early trade as European banks were pressured as investors worried about their ability to raise capital amid the debt crisis. The S&P 500 financial sector index .GSPF was off 0.9 percent. Bank of America fell 1 percent to $5.75, one of the top decliners on the Dow.
Investors closely watching movement in the euro, which has been closely correlated with global equities. The single currency tumbled to a 15-month low against the dollar and an 11-year low versus the yen.
The private sector added 325,000 jobs in December, well above expectations for 178,000, according to a private report, while weekly jobless claims fell by 15,000 last week. The reports offered more evidence the labor market was improving.
With the recent batch of strong economic data, some market participants hoped the United States could resist the effects of a possible Eurozone recession.
The (jobs reports) number is stunning. This is another data point that shows our economy is healing, said Wayne Kaufman, chief market analyst at John Thomas Financial in New York.
At the same time, I think this sets up the possibility for a disappointment tomorrow.
The government will issue its non-farm payrolls report on Friday, and is expected to show the economy added 150,000 public and private sector jobs last month.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 93.58 points, or 0.75 percent, at 12,324.84. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 8.29 points, or 0.65 percent, at 1,269.01. The Nasdaq Composite Index took off 8.53 points, or 0.32 percent, at 2,639.83.
Easing some anxiety about the debt crisis, French borrowing costs rose slightly when the government sold debt for the first time this year. Demand was solid despite concerns it could lose its AAA credit rating.
December's ISM non-manufacturing index will be released at 10 a.m. EST. The index is seen at 53.0 versus 52.0.