Snapshot of news and events for today
||Major world indicators
- The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average ended 2.2 percent, or 322.65 points lower to close at 14,130.17.
- The dollar bought
Wednesday U.S. Markets...
- The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended down 131.24 points, or 1.1 percent, at 12,029.06 -- it did trade below 12,000 for a brief time for the first time since March. The Nasdaq Composite Index fell 1.1 percent, or 28.02 points, at 2,429.71.
- The 10-year Treasury note was up 18/32 point, or $5.6250 per $1,000 face value, at 97 24/32 to yield 4.154 percent. The 30-year bond was up 28/32 point at 94 11/32 to yield 4.731 percent.
- The dollar traded at 107.79 yen, compared to 107.97 yen late Tuesday, while the euro rose to $1.5525, compared to $15512.
||Yesterday's action and
What happened yesterday...
- Corn: Futures finished 3 3/4 to 6 cents higher.
- Soybeans: Futures finished 1 3/4 to 11 1/4 cents lower in the most actively traded contracts.
- Wheat: Futures closed higher at all three exchanges.
- Cotton: Futures closed moderately to sharply higher, as the market continued to keep an eye on weather conditions and outside markets.
- Lean Hogs: Lean hog futures closed narrowly mixed following a choppy day of price action.
- Live Cattle: Live cattle futures closed higher, supported by the beef market, which has traders fully expecting $1 to $2 higher cash cattle trade -- possibly beginning today.
||Other reports affecting agriculture
||Links to top news reports
with potential U.S. ag impact
Wall Street Journal (subscription to site required for access)
- Midwest Flooding Cuts Into Railroad Forecasts While expectations are railroads will see earnings reduced most rail stocks rose in trading Wednesday as many view the flood-related problems as a temporary situation.
Midwest Floods Dredge Up Dispute Critics Say Building Near Rivers Is Cause Of Recent Problems
- Paulson Pushes Oversight Changes Treasury Head Seeks Better Rules Sooner In Financial System. The Treasury Sec. today is expected to call for shifts in U.S. regulations while still keeping a balance between "market discipline and market oversight."
- A Brave New World for Financial Regulation Commentary item by Christopher Cox, chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission. The writer says that protections currently in law are not enough and more are needed to deal with financial crises and that "explicit legislative authorization for what is now a purely voluntary program of SEC supervision is vital."
- Republicans Ramp Up Debate on Offshore Drilling Coordinated Effort Pits Bush, McCain Against Democrats. President Bush, in a coordinated effort with others, laid criticism at the feet of the Democratically controlled Congress on the issue of off-shore drilling, calling on lawmakers to approve such an action.
- Amid Crisis, Argentina Wonders Which Kirchner Is in Charge. The Argentine farmers strike has raised a lot of questions with Argentine citizens as to whether the president or her husband, the former president, is really in charge.
- General Mills Raises Forecast Strong Sales, Volumes Offset Marketing Costs Used to Keep Customers The company said it will exceed its earnings forecast despite increased amounts spent to try and keep customers.
- In the Rubble of Sichuan, Chinese Get Back to Business A Displaced Teen Gives Workers Haircuts, And Sees a Brighter Future for Herself. Businesses are springing back up in China, sometimes in rather makeshift settings, but they are returning to work as the country continues to recover from the deadly earthquake that hit Sichuan province.
New York Times (registration to site required)
- Bush Calls for Offshore Oil Drilling President Joins McCain in Seeking to Lift Long-Standing Ban Democratic leaders rejected Bush's plea, saying if the administration were serious about the issue, it wouldn't keep offering up old ideas.
- Wall Street Lobbies to Protect Speculative Oil Trades Executives from Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are among those who have been lobbying lawmakers in an effort to head off legislation that would end or severely curtail speculative trading in oil futures.
- Iowa Flooding Could Be An Act of Man, Experts Say Some believe changes made by humans are behind the catastrophic flooding that struck the Midwest this month.
- Paulson To Urge New Fed Powers Bank Would Help Police Wall Street Treasury Sec. Paulson today is expected to call for development of regulations to give the Fed more leeway and guidance to help protect the nation's finance and banking system.
||Monitoring the countryside
Fargo Forum (North Dakota)
- Senate, House override veto on farm bill for second time The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) says it has food aid orders ready to go, just awaiting the enaction of the trade title of the new farm bill which took place Wednesday with veto overrides in both the House and Senate.
Des Moines Register (Iowa)
|Laughing with, not at
||From political humorists
Jay Leno: "And President Bush gave a big speech today in Europe. He says he regrets giving the false impression that he is not a man of peace. But see, that's the problem. Oh, you start one or two little wars, and right away, oh, everybody jumps to conclusions.”
Jay Leno: "According to the Washington Post, Barack Obama and actress Scarlett Johansson are e-mail buddies. … So, you got a…23-year-old gorgeous, blonde actress e-mailing a married presidential candidate. Well, what could go wrong there, huh?”
Jay Leno: "Not to be outdone today, John McCain admitted he had been exchanging flirty e-mails with Angela Lansbury. And there's talk of Rue McClanahan.”
Jay Leno: "And Hillary Clinton's camp says she is not actively a seeking the vice president nomination. Passive aggressively seeking it, yes, but not actively.”