Snapshot of news and events for today
||Major world indicators
Friday's U.S. Markets...
- The Dow Jones Industrial Average soared 494.13 points, or 6.54%, to 8046.42. The Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 68.23, or 5.18 percent, to 1,384.35. The Dow was down 5.3 percent for the week and the Nasdaq nearly 8.74 percent.
- The 10-year Treasury note yield jumped to 3.20 percent from 3.00 percent late Thursday. The 30-year rose 22/32 to yield 3.662 percent.
- The dollar traded at 95.93 yen from 94.14 yen, while the euro strengthened to $1.2577 from $1.2427 late Thursday.
||Yesterday's action and
What happened yesterday...
- Corn: Futures closed sharply lower to finish the week and posted a downside breakout from the consolidation range.
- Soybeans: Futures finished with double-digit losses Friday to finish a week of sharp price losses.
- Wheat: Futures finished mostly 12 to 15 cents lower Friday on heavy pressure from the corn market.
- Cotton: Futures closed sharply higher in many contracts Friday, but held in a sideways trading pattern this week to finish the week about steady with last week's close.
- Lean Hogs: December lean hog futures closed 7 cents higher Friday, while deferred contracts were lower.
- Live Cattle: Cash cattle prices and cattle futures both posted sharp declines.
||Other reports affecting agriculture
||Links to top news reports
with potential U.S. ag impact
Wall Street Journal (subscription to site required for access)
- Geithner, Summers to Take the Lead on New Economic Team President-elect Obama is seen announcing that New York Fed President Timothy Geithner will be his pick to be Treasury Sec. and that former Treas. Sec. Lawrence SUmmers will head up the National Economic Council (NEC).
Duo Has Proved More Pragmatic Than Ideological
Summers Offers Big-Picture Advice to Hedge Fund
New Economic Lineup Puts Bernanke's Role in Play
Secretary of Bailouts Review & Outlook item.
- U.S. Agrees to Rescue Struggling Citigroup Plan Injects $20 Billion in Fresh Capital, Guarantees $306 Billion in Toxic Assets The action marks another chapter in the efforts to try and shore up the nation's financial system. Some speculate if it works, it could be a major plus. If it doesn't work, it could lead to more financial pressure. The fresh injection of $20 billion is in addition to the $25 billion it received initially.
Anatomy of the Morgan Stanley Panic
- Obama Eyes $500 Billion in Stimulus; Paulson Weighs Ramping Up Aid Again An economic stimulus package that would total $500 billion over two years is being mulled by the incoming Obama administration. Meanwhile, Treasury Sec. Paulson is now considering tapping into the second half of the $700 billion rescue plan, something he said recently he didn't want to do to make sure the new administration had tools/funds available.
Fed Has More Ammunition After Firing Rate-Cut Bullets
- Bush Pushes Trans-Pacific Free Trade. President Bush this weekend called for the pursuit of a proposed trans-Pacific free-trade area, something Bush said could provide new opportunities for the region.
- Voters Elevate Rivals of Chávez To Key Governorships in Venezuela. While opposition parties have captured several key governorships in the country, the article points out that the biggest plus that remains for Chavez is that the opposition is not a united front.
New York Times (registration to site required)
- Democrats' Stimulus Plan May Reach $700 Billion Spending Package Would Rival Financial System Bailout Democrats may be looking at a stimulus plan that reaches $700 billion over two years due to what they consider "dire" economic conditions. And the article says that they may even have to abandon their pledge to roll back the Bush tax cuts.
- U.S. Offers Citigroup Expansive Safety Net Aim Is to Restore Confidence in Critical Bank The new package for Citigroup marks the latest effort by the government to stem the financial crisis and rebuild confidence in the U.S. economy and financial system.
Fed Has Giant, and Opaque, Role in Financial Crisis Aid
- APEC Leaders Have Cautionary Words for President-Elect Obama Foreign Leaders Caution President-Elect; Bush Secures Pledge on Trade Barriers While President Bush was at the meeting of Asia leaders, much of the attention was focused on President-elect Obama, with several leaders of countries expressing a hope the new president will not go back on trade pledges made by the United States.
||Monitoring the countryside
Fargo Forum (North Dakota)
Des Moines Register (Iowa)
- Vilsack ends ag secretary speculation Former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack (D) says he's not the Obama pick to be the next USDA Secretary, saying he's never been contacted about the position or any other in the incoming administration.
|Laughing with, not at
||From political humorists
Jay Leno: "This weekend, the big auto show opens here in Los Angeles. It's $10 to get in, $25 billion to get out."
David Letterman: "There are some nice aspects during the transition period. For example, the Bush twins" gave "the Obama girls a tour of the White House." It was "very sweet," but the Obama girls "got really scared because they heard creepy organ music coming from Cheney's underground lair."
Conan O'Brien: "The auto executives for the Big Three" are "being criticized now," because, before "they asked Congress for billions of dollars, they all flew to Washington in private jets. Yeah, separately, in private jets." In "their defense, the executives said, 'We would have driven, but our cars only get three miles to the gallon.'"