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Stocks Markets Plummet Further in U.S. and Abroad

Global markets sank and the Dow Jones industrial average sank to a six-year low on fears over bleak job reports and the fragile state of the economy. Kwame Holman reports.

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  • JIM LEHRER:

    The financial markets continued their fall today. Stocks were down again, even as President Obama vowed to make sure the economic stimulus performs as promised. NewsHour correspondent Kwame Holman has our lead story report.

  • KWAME HOLMAN:

    The latest losses on Wall Street closed out the second week of a sell-off. It's been fueled in part by concerns about big banks and fears that President Obama's economic plans may not be enough.

    Today, the Dow Jones industrial average fell another 100 points to finish at 7,365. That's its lowest level in more than six years. The Nasdaq fell 1.5 points to close at 1,441.

    The losses had been even worse before U.S. officials reaffirmed they oppose nationalizing troubled banks. Still, leading analysts pointed to a continuing fear factor, and the sell-off reached to Europe and Asia, with major indexes off 2 percent to 4 percent, or more.

    The volatility led the president of the European Central Bank to call for reforming the global financial system.

    JEAN-CLAUDE TRICHET, president, European Central Bank (through translator): Everything must change, in my opinion. Everything must change. We need to consider that it is the whole system which proved too fragile, not resilient enough.