Friday, October 19, 2007

Stocks Get Pummeled

Dow down almost 367 points, its third worst day of the year, on fears about credit and housing sector, earnings, record-high oil prices, slide in dollar, what the Fed will do next.
Stocks tumbled Friday as record-high oil prices, more problems in the bank sector and slower corporate earnings growth revived worries about an economic slowdown.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost around 367 points, seeing its third-biggest point loss of the year, its worst since the steep selloff in early August in the midst of the credit and mortgage market mess.

The decline Friday left the blue-chip indicator at its lowest point since Sept. 17, the day before the Federal Reserve cut interest rates for the first time in 4 years, triggering a rally that was cut short this week.

The S&P 500 index lost 2.6 percent and the Nasdaq composite gave up 2.7 percent.

Disappointing earnings from Caterpillar, Honeywell and others exacerbated concerns about weak third-quarter profits. Meanwhile, Wachovia became the latest financial services firm to reveal how the credit and mortgage market crisis had hit its profits.

Oil prices ended lower Friday, but not before hitting an all-time high of $90.07 a barrel in electronic trading. The dollar fell to a new record low against the euro and also slipped versus the yen. Treasury prices surged, as investors sought safety in the comparably safe haven of bonds.
The house of cards that is the United States economy seem ready to come tumbling down. The question I think isn't if we will go into a recession but how severe a recession we can expect?