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News Wrap: Hedge fund SAC Capital to pay $1.8 billion in plea deal for insider trading

April 10, 2014 at 6:03 PM EST
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JUDY WOODRUFF: A wave of selling hit Wall Street today. Technology and biotech stocks were especially hard-hit. The Nasdaq fell more than 129 points to close at 4,054, its worst day since November 2011. The Dow Jones industrials — industrial average lost nearly 267 points to close at 16,170. And the S&P 500 was down 39 at 1,833. The drop came despite a report that new claims for jobless benefits are now the lowest in nearly seven years.

A federal judge in New York has sentenced SAC Capital in a major insider trading case. The hedge fund will pay a record fine as part of a plea deal totaling $1.8 billion. Eight SAC employees have already been convicted of insider trading, but founder and owner Steven Cohen has not been charged.

Investigators in Murrysville, Pennsylvania, tried today to understand why a teenager stabbed 21 people at his high school. Sixteen-year-old Alex Hribal was tackled and arrested after yesterday’s attack. He faces multiple counts of attempted murder and aggravated assault.

Today, one of the victims, Brett Hurt, told of being knifed in the back as he walked with a friend.

BRETT HURT, Stabbing Victim: There were so many people in the hallways, and then when someone said they saw blood or something, everyone just started screaming. And that — but when I got hit, everyone noticed and just started running in different directions. Gracey was screaming and asking me if I was all right, and I was just trying to keep pressure on my back and take me into a safe room.

JUDY WOODRUFF: The defense lawyer for Alex Hribal said he had no history of mental illness and that the attack seemed to come out of nowhere. Three of the wounded remain in critical condition.

Searchers looking for the missing Malaysian airliner are now analyzing a possible fifth underwater ping. The Australian air force detected the sound today using sonar buoys in a section of the Indian Ocean that’s about the size of Los Angeles.

In Perth, Australia, the head of the search effort said they’re listening for more pings before sending down a robotic vehicle.

ANGUS HOUSTON, Air Chief Marshall, Search Coordinator: Bear in mind that the time spent on the surface, we’re covering six times more area in any given time than we will be able to do when we go underwater. So, with the batteries likely to fade or fail very shortly, we need to get as much positional data as we can, so that we can define a very small search area.

JUDY WOODRUFF: The hunt for debris on the surface has already narrowed to just over 22,000 square miles. That’s about a quarter of the previous search area.

The United Nations Security Council is ready to send close to 12,000 peacekeepers to the Central African Republic. Today’s council vote means the U.N. force will take over from 5,000 African Union troops in September. The mission is to quell violence between Christians and Muslims across the country.

NATO warned Russia today to pull back its 40,000 troops along the border with Ukraine. Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen spoke in Prague and said any further Russian intervention could have grave consequences.

ANDERS FOGH RASMUSSEN, Secretary-General, NATO: You have a choice to stop blaming others for your own actions, to stop massing your troops, to stop escalating this crisis and start engaging in a genuine dialogue.

JUDY WOODRUFF: Rasmussen also said NATO is considering its own deployments within Eastern Europe. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov shot back that even talking of deploying troops near Russia is a violation of existing agreements.

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin issued his own warning over natural gas. He said Ukraine must start paying in advance or deliveries may be halted.

In Washington, there’s word that enrollment under the new health care law has now hit 7.5 million. The announcement today is an increase from 7.1 million last week. Open enrollment officially ended March 31, but many people were given extra time.

House Republicans have pushed through a nonbinding budget that promises to wipe out deficits in 10 years. Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan wrote the plan, including large cuts in health programs, food stamps and grants for college students.

REP. PAUL RYAN, R, Chair, House Budget Committee: We are offering a balanced budget that pays down the debt. We are offering patient-centered solutions.

(APPLAUSE)

REP. PAUL RYAN:
We are offering patient-centered solutions so patients are the nucleus of the health care system, not the government. We’re offering a plan to save Medicare now and for future generations.

(APPLAUSE)

JUDY WOODRUFF: Democrats decried the bill, led by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi at her weekly briefing.

REP. NANCY PELOSI, D, Calif., Minority Leader, House Minority Leader: The persistence of Ryan in doubling down and making matters worse with the budget he has now make it totally a moral imperative for us to make that fight the center stage.

We — we always talk about jobs, but seeing it through the prism of what the Ryan budget does, it’s not, as I said, a path to prosperity. It’s a road to recession.

JUDY WOODRUFF: The bill is not expected to advance in the Democratic-controlled Senate.

You can pencil in a new host for “The Late Show” on CBS. The network named Stephen Colbert today to take over when David Letterman retires sometime next year. Colbert has done a parody of a conservative talk show host on Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report” since 2005.