News that the government is going to make large-scale changes to mend the economy spurred large changes in the stock market today: "The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 368.75 points, or 3.4%, to 11,388.44, and the S&P 500 gained 48.48 points, or 4%, to 1254.99. The Nasdaq added 74.80 points, or 3.4%, to 2273.90. stock market today," accoridng to The Street.
The New York Times describes the tense meeting last night when Fed chairman Ben Bernanke explained to congressional leaders how crucial the current moment is for the economy. According to Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., and chairman of the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, “we’re literally maybe days away from a complete meltdown of our financial system, with all the implications here at home and globally.”
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced a temporary ban on short-selling Friday that extends to midnight October 2. “The Commission is committed to using every weapon in its arsenal to combat market manipulation that threatens investors and capital markets,” said SEC Chairman Christopher Cox in a press release.
Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke met with Congressional leaders Thursday night to propose a bailout plan for struggling financial companies. Under the plan, which would likely require Congressional approval, the government would buy tens of billions of dollars in toxic mortgage assets.
Swaziland, Africa’s last absolute monarchy, held its first parliamentary election today amid protests for a more democratic government. Foreign observers monitoring the election said they’re concerned that the exclusion of some political parties undermines the legitimacy of the election.
North Korea says it plans to restart the Yongbyon nuclear reactor, which was in the process of being destroyed under a disarmament-for-aid deal signed last year, saying that the United States has not fulfilled its end of the deal.
Nigerian militant group Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) destroyed a Royal Dutch Shell oil pipeline Thursday, after declaring “war” on Sunday against oil companies and the Nigerian military.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement dropped its case against former Rep. Mark Foley, who resigned in 2006 after it was discovered he sent sexually-explicit e-mails and instant messages to underage male pages.
Some residents of Galveston, Texas, may not be allowed to rebuild their beach-front homes under a 1959 Texas law that declares beach between the average high-tide line and the average low-tide line to be public property. Hurricane Ike has eroded beaches so badly that many houses now sit on public property.
At a Friday campaign rally at the University of Miami, Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama was heckled by a group of mostly black protestors, who held signs reading “Blacks against Obama” and “Obama endorsed by the KKK.”
The McCain campaign criticized the organizers of an anti-Iran rally in New York after they withdrew an invitation to vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin, saying that her presence at the event would distract from their message. N.Y. Sen. Hillary Clinton had also been invited but backed out days before, after learning that Palin would attend.
Alaska Rep. Don Young officially won his Republican primary yesterday after his opponent, Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell, declined to demand a recount. Young, who has held Alaska's only House seat for 35 years, is a target in a federal investigation of corruption in Alaska politics.
Three papers to be published in the journal Pigment Cell & Melanoma Research say that tans from sunshine or from a tanning bed both increase the likelihood of skin cancer. “There’s a lot of money to be made, and the tanning industry has been quite successful even in places like New Mexico and South America selling tanning as a safe alternative to outdoor sun. We’re trying to point out that it’s not the case,” said one of the paper’s authors.
The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) announced Thursday that its Large Hadron Collider had to be shut down last week after a cooling transformer malfunctioned, just hours after its heavily-hyped launch. The transformer has been repaired and the scientists are waiting for the collider to cool before resuming experiments.
A new study in the journal Science reports that physiological reactions may be linked to one’s political beliefs. Researchers found that those who scare easily tend to support conservative policies like strong national defense and the death penalty, while those who don’t scare easily support liberal policies like gun control and foreign aid.
Billionaire Stanley Druckenmiller withdrew his offer to buy the Pittsburgh Steelers Thursday, saying that the current owners, the Rooney family, need more time to restructure their ownership. The Rooneys have been trying to do so for the last two years, after the NFL ordered them to divest their gambling operations and name a majority owner.