US stocks continue to drop

July 16th, 2008 - 7:58 am ICT by IANS  

New York, July 16 (DPA) Dropping oil prices and waning investor confidence over the government’s plan to save Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgage firms brought the US Standard & Poor’s 500 Index to its lowest level since 2005 Tuesday, despite a pitch by US President Goerge W. Bush to calm market jitters. The NASDAQ high tech index was up slightly, but the Dow Jones also declined.

Exxon Mobil Corp slid the most since March as crude fell more than $6 a barrel amidst growing concern a slower economy will reduce demand.

Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke added to investor worries with his presentation of a a glum economic outlook to Congress that was several shades darker than his remarks in June.

The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 92.65 points, or 0.84 percent, to 10,962.54. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500 Index fell 13.39 points, or 1.09 percent, to 1,214.91. The technology- heavy Nasdaq Composite Index rose 2.84 points, or 0.13 percent, to 2,215.71.

The dollar rose to 62.90 euro cents from 62.87 euro cents on Monday, and fell to 104.77 Japanese yen from 106.17 yen Monday.

Gold increased five dollars to $978 per fine ounce.

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