Snapshot of news and events for today
||Major world indicators
- The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average lost 373.53 points, or 4.3 percent, to 8,253.44.
- The dollar was at 96.61 yen from 97.84 yen late Friday.
Friday's U.S. Markets...
- The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 148.38, or 1.9 percent, to 7,776.18 -- up 6.8 percent for the week. The Dow's gain over the last three weeks is its biggest percentage move over such a period since Sept. 1982. The Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 41.80, or 2.6 percent, to 1,545.20 -- up 6 percent for the week.
- The 10-year Treasury note yield rose to 2.76 percent from 2.74 percent.
- The dollar was at 97.92 yen from 98.70 yen, while the euro was at $1.3299 from $1.3518 late Thursday.
||Yesterday's action and
What happened the prior trading day...
- Corn: Futures were slightly lower today and finished lower for the week.
- Soybeans: Futures were hit with heavy selling pressure to finish the week. May beans finished about 35 cents below last week's close.
- Wheat: Futures ended the week under pressure due to negative outside markets and a lack of fresh positive news.
- Cotton: Futures finished under light pressure today and were slightly lower for the week.
- Lean Hogs: Lean hog futures ended the week under pressure in most contracts. April hogs ended about $1.35 below last week's close.
- Live Cattle: Live cattle futures finished slightly lower in all but the April contract, which was a nickel higher. Cattle futures also finished lower for the week.
||Other reports affecting agriculture
||Links to top news reports
with potential U.S. ag impact
Wall Street Journal (subscription to site required for access)
- Government Forces Out Wagoner at GM Most of Board Gone, Too, After Threat to Withhold Bailout Cash; Chrysler Urged to Make Fiat Deal; U.S. Says Bankruptcy an Option The moves by the administration are being taken as a sign the government is willing to wade deeper into the situation than many had expected. It also signals that the plans offered up by automakers didn't meet the administration's goals for the plans.
Veteran Henderson Will Take Reins of Auto Maker
CEO Change Begs Question About Banks
Wagoner, With Knack for Survival, Finally Hits a Dead End
Treasury Has $134.5 Billion Left in TARP
- Crop Forecast to Show State of the Sector. The item previews the Prospective Plantings Report due out tomorrow from USDA, with expectations that corn and cotton acreage will be below last year while soybean acreage is expected to rise.
- U.S. to Host Forum on Climate Change. The administration announced it will host 17 countries for a late-April meeting on climate change with a goal of setting things in motion to reach a deal in Copenhagen this December.
Cap and Trade War Editorial
- For G-20, Lofty Goals Have Fallen to Earth The upcoming G20 summit is no longer expected to have the broad aggressive agenda that was originally conceived for the effort, in no small part due to changes in the global economy and a reluctance to push more stimulus efforts forward by countries in Europe.
- Residents Wary as River Recedes Some Levees Breached but Catastrophe Averted So Far in North Dakota, Minnesota Flood waters are starting to recede in the Red River Valley, but residents remain uneasy. Officials said they'll need millions of dollars for cleanup and are seeking another $800 million for dike construction to protect Fargo, ND, from future floods.
- The Wall Street Journal Future of Finance Initiative. There are a series of articles in this special section on the future of finance in the U.S. and world, including on banking, credit markets and more.
New York Times (registration to site required)
- GM Chief to Resign at White House's Behest Obama Pushes General Motors and Chrysler to Slim Down, Make More Concessions President Obama will outline stricter terms for U.S. automakers GM and Chrysler in order for them to gain more federal aid. And those conditions and changes will be stricter and more sweeping than the plan the Bush administration had been offering to the firms.
- Momentum Grows for Relaxing Cuba Policy Senate Measure Would Eliminate Travel Ban Lawmakers Tuesday are scheduled to propose a measure which would bring sweeping changes to U.S.-Cuba policy and it has broader support than similar plans in recent years.
- Winds of Change Evident in U.S. Environmental Policy The item looks at how career employees at EPA have kept some issues alive and have kept studying, gathering information and writing regulations on issues that top-level officials had decided against pursuing. Now those activities by career people are being utilized by the new administration to make changes in U.S. environmental policy.
||Monitoring the countryside
Wichita Eagle (Kansas)
- Economy puts the squeeze on dairy farms From Saturday's editions. Milk prices have fallen to half the levels seen in June and some estimates are that dairymen are losing $3 per head per day with breakeven prices put at around $15 per cwt.
|Laughing with, not at
||From political humorists
Jay Leno: "President Obama is everywhere, isn't he? I mean, last week, he was on our show. Sunday night, he was on '60 Minutes.' Tuesday night, he held a primetime press conference. And last night, he was on 'Lost,' trying to sell his economic plan to the people on the island."
Jay Leno: "There was one embarrassing moment. Someone online said to the President, 'I'd like to meet with you sometime and tell you some of my ideas.' It was Joe Biden."
Jimmy Fallon: "Former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson is writing a book about his role in the Bush Administration during the economic crisis. It's weird. The book starts on chapter 11." yes I should