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News Wrap: Wall Street Up for the Week Despite Bleak Jobs Report

August 6, 2010 at 12:00 AM EST
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HARI SREENIVASAN: The jobs report sent Wall Street tumbling, but the market managed to recovery later in the day. At one point, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 160 points. In the end, it lost 21 points to close at 10653. The Nasdaq fell four points to finish at 2288. For the week, the Dow gained nearly 2 percent; the Nasdaq rose 1.5 percent.

BP crews watched and waited today for cement to harden in that plugged well in the Gulf of Mexico. And while they waited, the company’s chief operating officer left open the possibility of drilling again in the same area.

Doug Suttles said it wouldn’t involve the well that caused the summerlong spill. He spoke in New Orleans.

DOUG SUTTLES, COO, Global Exploration, BP: What we have always said is, we were abandoning this well.

QUESTION: But not the preserve?

DOUG SUTTLES: No, we haven’t even thought about — well, clearly, there is lots of oil and gas here. And we will have to think about what to do with that at some point. But what we have always stated is, the original well, the well that had the blowout, and the relief wells would be abandoned. And that’s what we are doing.

HARI SREENIVASAN: It is estimated the reservoir beneath the newly sealed well could hold nearly $4 billion worth of oil.

Catastrophic flooding in Northwest Pakistan swept south today and storms grounded relief flights. The government estimated more than 12 million people have been affected, and many have received no aid.

We have a report from Jonathan Miller of Independent Television News.

JONATHAN MILLER: They fled their mud brick homes at 7:00 a.m. last Thursday morning, as a wall of water came down the Swat River. They found themselves marooned, completely surrounded by water. Until this moment, they hadn’t seen a single relief worker since the flood, despite being a stone’s throw from the town of Charsadda and the place being accessible for several days.

They have no proper shelter. And monsoon storms still threaten this region. They have no food or water, except what’s donated by other locals. We drive on down the road. And even closer to Charsadda town, we find what was once the leafy riverside village of Chakasara (ph). Everything is broken.

There is a smell of death in the air, although it is probably coming from rotting carcasses. It’s a forlorn scene, a pervading sense of hopelessness, a makeshift encampment above the Swat River floodplain, 5,000 people unfed.

Everywhere we have gone in the past three days, we have been met by bitter accusations that the government authorities have failed to come to the rescue. Tonight, the Pakistani prime minister conceded they were struggling.

And he appealed to the world for more help. It’s not hard to see why this part of Punjab has been declared a disaster zone, in the district of Layyah alone, 300,000 people displaced and 1,200 square kilometers submerged, most of it fertile farm land, the Indus River now a vast lake swollen by flash floods from the north gorged past bursting by fresh monsoon rain. And still more is forecast.

The floods have now carved a 1,000 kilometer-long trail of destruction from the very north of this country and, by tomorrow, to the very south, too.

HARI SREENIVASAN: Flooding also ravaged the Indian part of Kashmir today after a cloudburst dumped torrents of rain. The downpours triggered flash floods that sent rivers of water and mud down mountainsides. More than 100 people were killed. And Indian troops struggled to pull survivors from the mud and rubble.

In Afghanistan, the bodies of eight foreigners and two Afghans were found in a remote northern region. They had been shot dead next to their vehicles. There was no word on the nationalities of the foreign victims. And, in the east, a Polish soldier with NATO, plus 12 Afghan civilians, were killed in roadside bomb attacks.

This was the anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan.

And, for the first time, a U.S. representative attended the ceremonies. A peace bell tolled at 8:15 in the morning, the moment the bomb was dropped 65 years ago. Later, white doves were released into the air. U.S. Ambassador John Roos was one of many dignitaries on hand. British and French delegates also made their first official appearance at the memorial.

Those are some the day’s major stories — now back to Judy.