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2.7%  Q1 GDP    4.57%  avg. 30-year mortgage     9.5%  Unemployment

Dow snaps four-week losing streak

UPDATED at 5:16 p.m.

Even though the Dow closed down for the day, it managed to erase its losses on the week and closed up nine-tenths of 1 percent, snapping a four-week losing streak.

The Dow closed down four-tenths of 1 percent at 10,099.14.

The broader S&P 500 closed down three-tenths of 1 percent at 1,075.51

The tech-heavy Nasdaq, however, closed up three-tenths of 1 percent 2,183.53.

Month-to-date, the Dow is up three-tenths of 1 percent and year-to-date it is down 3.2 percent. Year-to-date, the S&P 500 is down a little more than the Dow and the Nasdaq is down 4 percent.

Interestingly and perhaps coincidentally, the current market depression is coming just about one year after the big market dive that sent the three major indexes to their early March trough.

Markets will be closed for the Presidents Day holiday on Monday.

Stocks open down sharply on China news

9:53 a.m.: Stocks opened down sharply after China, for the second time in month, told its banks to raise more reserve cash.

In the first 20 minutes of trading, the Dow is down 1.4 percent.

The broader S&P 500 is down 1.3 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq is down 1.1 percent.

China is trying to create a U.S.-like bubble from occurring in housing construction, which is on a runaway pace, so the central government is forcing banks to hold onto more capital -- and lend less -- to slowly deflate the bubble. The markets don't like this because it means slower growth.

In other news this morning, January retail sales were up half of 1 percent, beating expectations of three-tenths of 1 percent, according to Commerce Department figures out moments ago.

Follow me on Twitter at @theticker

By Frank Ahrens  |  February 12, 2010; 5:16 PM ET
Categories:  The Ticker , Wall Street  | Tags: China, Dow Jones, nasdaq, retail, s&p 500  
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Comments

It looks like "Chicken Little" is at work again. Who are these people that trade stocks? Are they really afraid of their own shadows or is this really any excuse to make a profit at the expense of the little who has a mutual fund which has been used to save for retirement via a 401K or 403B? I say it is that latter.

Posted by: nychap44 | February 12, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

I suspect this conventional analysis is wrong. The linking of the Chinese currency with the dollar has been killing Japan and Europe. The big story today was the flat Germany economy. It difficult to see how we do well with a W second recession in Europe and Japan.

Posted by: jhough1 | February 12, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Some say credit and debt is the “mother’s milk” of capitalism and I can’t necessarily disagree but too much debt, “debt abuse” can be catastrophic and not only destroy capitalism but civilization as we know it. We have many examples of these near disaster in the last century.

The “Debt Pushers” not unlike the “drug pushers” like to hitch a ride on cash flow and government guarantees. They live in the world of the abstract the so common man cannot understand, using acronyms such as SIV, CDO, CDS, EBITDA. Always one step ahead of the public their new schemes they call “products” legitimizes their work and permits them to weave themselves into government influence and eventually partner up in such elaborate schemes guaranteed by the government itself. These Ponzi schemes grow in secret along with the government as ther accomplices; the debt pushers always know when to get off the train collecting there fees before the train hits the wall. With deck stacked in their favor their products fully tax deductable. Businesses that grow organically are taxed at nearly 40%
But then have to borrow that same money back to grow some more. The “debt pushers” always get their cut. They live in a world of non-disclosure. Organically driven growth seems to have left behind and debt driven growth seems recipe for disaster. Let us have honest prudent lending instead of financial slight of hand. A financial revolution is what is needed people.

Posted by: cutlers221 | February 15, 2010 3:53 AM | Report abuse

***** SAVE SMALL BUSINESSES & JOBS.. ... ... .... ... ...President Obama: Keep COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE FORECLOSURES from occurring and closing Small Businesses.....use 10% of the $787 Billion "JOBS" Bill our children will pay for; to AVOID 1930'S style, full-blown DEPRESSION!!

Posted by: MSFT-PELOSI | February 15, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

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