July 28 - The Dow and S&P 500 added to losses but the Nasdaq finished higher as worries about the debt debate partly overshadowed upbeat housing and jobs data. Conway G. Gittens reports.
Blue chips fell for a fifth straight session as Wall Street struggled to regain composure after its worst beating in eight weeks. There was some improved sentiment due in part to upbeat economic news. For the first time since April applications for jobless claims fell below 400,000, which suggests a stable labor market. And pending home sales were surprisingly up in June, in data compiled by the National Association of Realtors. But Wall Street was still nervous ahead of a key vote in Congress, which could bring the debt showdown one step closer to a resolution. Peter Crane follows the mutual fund and money market industry for Crane Data. SOUNDBITE: PETER CRANE, PRESIDENT, CRANE DATA (ENGLISH) SAYING: "A default scenario isn't expected to impact funds dramatically - or a default or a downgrade isn't expected to impact them dramatically. A downgrade you know may get more severe but people are planning for a temporary disruption." MUSIC UPSOUND: "RAISE THE DEBT CEILING, RAISE THE DEBT CEILING, RAISE THE DEBT CEILING" The debt dilemma is serious business, but comedic rapper Remy is finding some humor in it, in his video "Raise the Debt Ceiling." MUSICAL SOUNDBITE: REMY, COMEDIC RAPPER (ENGLISH) SAYING: "QE1, QE2, QE4, QE3 dropping IOUs in every fund that I see. Printing the cash, inflating the monies, calling up China, saying we are straight out of 20s." As part of his comedic take on the issue - Remy takes on both sides posing as lawmakers testifying on C-SPAN. All joking aside though, the market is still nervous about an August 2nd deadline to raise the debt ceiling and the possibility of a U.S. credit downgrade. The Dow and S&P 500 gave up early gains to settle slightly lower, the Nasdaq ended higher. Meanwhile, European markets were mixed, with London posting a small gain. Conway Gitens, Reuters