Stock Market Down More Than 700 Points - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

New York, NY 10/15/08

Stock Market Down More Than 700 Points

NEW YORK, NY (WLBT) - There's new evidence today that despite government efforts to turn things around the economy's headed for a rough ride for the rest of this year and into next.

As evidenced by the DOW's record slide today on Wall Street.

Today's retail sales numbers not good. Wholesale prices are better. And the Federal Reserve released a report today showing the country's slipping deeper into an economic rut.

News that consumers are spending less and profits are down at banks like JP Morgan and Wells Fargo sent stock prices plunging today.

The DOW Jones industrial average closed down 733 points, its second largest loss ever, erasing almost all of Monday's gains.

"Even if they stabilize, as we hope they will, the broader economic recovery will not happen right away," said Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke.

There are new signs we're in for rough times:

The Commerce Department reports shoppers spent one-point-two percent less last month.

A bit of good news: wholesale prices dropped for the second month in a row mainly due to cheaper oil.

That could keep inflation in check and lead to lower prices at the grocery store.

The Bush Administration is focusing on banks, buying their stock.

So banks can make loans and ease the credit crunch.

President Bush pitched the plan to bankers and businesses in Michigan on Wednesday.

"Frankly I don't want government being involved in businesses, owning businesses. I don't think it's good for the country. It's necessary that stock be purchased to help us through this financial crisis," said President Bush.

Democrats fear the "trickle down" won't happen:

"My biggest concern is that these capital injections will not find their way to main street," said Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer of New York.

Main street where families have lost jobs, struggle to buy food and gas and are watching their retirement savings slip away.

A Federal Reserve survey out today shows economic activity down in all 12 of its regions, and business owners pessimistic about the months ahead.
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