Wall Street Stocks Approach 12-Year Lows

In the fall of 2007, the Dow Jones industrial average peaked at more than 14,000. Now, stocks are at roughly half that level. Dow components — including aluminum maker Alcoa and credit card company American Express — saw big drops in their stock prices Monday.The overall index dropped more than 3 percent, to 7,176.

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STEVE INSKEEP, host:

NPR's business news starts with a milestone: The Dow's down by half.

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INSKEEP: It's our duty to remind you that in the fall of 2007, the Dow Jones Industrial Average peaked at more than 14,000. Today, investors start the trading day with the leading U.S. stocks at roughly half that level. Yesterday, some of the companies that make up the Dow saw big drops in their stock prices. American Express is down. Alcoa is down, the aluminum maker. Can't wait for tomorrow. The overall index dropped to a little over 7,100. And pessimism spread to Asia, where markets all ended sharply lower today. South Korea and Hong Kong both lost more than 3 percent. Mattress futures remain unchanged.

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