Dow Plunges Following Greek Chaos

Dow manages to recover after massive sell-off following reports of a computer glitch

The stock market has had one of its most turbulent days ever. The Dow Jones industrials plunged nearly 1,000 points in half an hour amid concerns that Greece's debt problems could halt the world financial recovery.      

The Dow has managed to recover two-thirds of its losses and close down 347 at 10,520. But all the major indexes lost 3 percent in a day that recalled the market turmoil of the 2008 financial crisis.      

There were reports that a technical glitch hastened the selling. Even so emotions are running high. Traders are concerned that Greece's economic problems will hurt other European countries and ultimately, the U.S. recovery.      

The Standard & Poor's 500 index is off 37 at 1,128. The Nasdaq composite index is off 82 at 2,319.  Only 173 stocks rose on the New York Stock Exchange while 3,002 fell. Volume came to an extremely heavy 2.57 billion shares.

Meanwhile, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission issued a statement saying they are working with other financial regulators and the stock exchanges to "review the unusual trading activity that took place briefly this afternoon."

The two agencies said they would take appropriate steps along with the stock exchanges to protect investors.

"We will make public the findings of our review along with recommendations for appropriate actions," the SEC and CFTC said in their statement.

Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., chairman of the House Financial Services subcommittee that oversees the SEC, sent a letter Thursday to agency Chairman Mary Schapiro asking for a "thorough examination" of the causes of the plunge and what changes may be needed to prevent future episodes.

Kanjorski also announced that his panel will hold a hearing Tuesday to examine the episode.

"Within a matter of minutes today, we faced a market that seemed just as volatile as it did in the fall of 2008," Kanjorski told Schapiro in the letter. "Reports have surfaced that much of this movement was potentially as a result of a computer glitch. We cannot allow a technological error to spook the markets and cause panic."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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