The markets open lower once again thanks to a worse-than-anticipated decline in personal spending fueling worries about the ailing economy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 94 points to 7,903. The S&P 500 declined 12 points to 813 while the Nasdaq Composite fell 14 points to 1,462. Very little news to start the week. The President contends that the financial stimulus package is on track, but investors aren't listening. GE is leading the financials lower, down 5% to a new multi-decade low. Piper Jaffray is down 16% after reporting a quarterly loss. Bank of America is down 6% on a NY Post article indicating more and more shareholders want the CEO, Ken Lewis to leave. One financial slash insurance stock trading higher is Hartford on a positive article in Barrons. Allstate is down 2% on concerns they may have to raise more capital. The healthcare sector is performing well this morning. Humana is up 3.5% after reaffirming earnings. Unitedhealth Group is trading higher as well. A number of techs are modestly higher. Applied Materials is higher even though they reported a quarterly loss. After the first half an hour the averages tried to rebound. The Nasdaq moved into the green, but the Dow remained weak. Through the morning, not much changed. The Dow remained weak while the Nasdaq clung to positive territory. During the lunch hour, the Treasury announced more plans for a financial crisis package to be laid out next week. The markets like the news, but the financials are not responding. Macys is down 14% after announcing a major restructuring. Best Buy is down 2% on cautious comments in Barrons. After the lunch hour the selling reaccelerated. Entering the last hour the Dow was down over 100 points. The Nasdaq was up a point, but improved through the hour. The Dow tried to claw its way back with little success. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 64 points at 7,936. The S&P 500 lost half a point to 825, while the Nasdaq advanced 18 points to finish at 1,494.
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