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U.S. stock gain after rate cuts in see-saw action

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stock indexes edged higher on Wednesday afternoon after several wild swings into positive and negative territory after the Federal Reserve axed interest rates with other central banks in an effort to stem the panic freezing the credit markets.

"It seems to be a tug of war between the bulls and the bears," said Robert Olman, president, Alpha Search Advisory Partners. "What we're really seeing is a complete lack of conviction from anyone of where the market is going."

The Fed cut its key lending rate by half a percentage point, bringing it down to 1.5%.

The European Central Bank trimmed its key refinancing rate to 3.75% from 4.25%, while the Bank of England cut its rate to 4.5% from 5%. China's central bank slashed its one-year benchmark lending and deposit interest rates, while the Bank of Japan sat out the moves but endorsed the coordinated actions. Rate cuts were also made by the Bank of Canada, the Swiss National Bank and the Swedish Riksbank.

"I was somewhat encouraged by the Fed rate cut, but it adds confidence back more to Main Street than to Wall Street," said Robert Pavlik, chief investment officer at Oaktree Asset Management.

A day ahead of the one-year anniversary of the Dow Jones Industrial Average's record close of 14,164, the market is facing record losses over the past year. The Dow has dropped nearly 35% from the peak, while the market value of the Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 has seen more than $7 trillion of its value wiped out

By Kate Gibson, MarketWatch

*For full story please visit http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/us-stocks-edge-higher-see-saw/story.aspx?guid=%7B1AE87086%2D330D%2D4E85%2D9FA7%2D505B331835C4%7D

2 comments:

khalid jarrar said...

Dear Ali,

I think that i represent a lot of people when i ask: what on earth is Dow Jones.

We all hear about it often and know that its "good" when its up and "bad" when its "heading south". we know its an indicator of how things are going well, but speaking of myself and other clueless people, i have to ask: what things exactly, and what does 10000 or 9500 points or whatever, really mean?

i would be very grateful if you explained to me, as i would brag about knowing that infomration in the next family meeting :P

yours truly,
economically clueless*

Ali said...

Hello Khalid,

First let me wellcome you to our blog, I hope you visit us more often to learn more about what is happening around the glob and also add value to this blog by posting your valuable comments and feedback.

please read the following topic, i hope it answers the first part of your question.

about what the number means, it all starts with the base value of the index, mostly it's 1000, so if the index advances by a 100 pionts this means that the average market advances by 10% and the same for the decline.

hope this answers your question.