Sept. 30 - Summary: Wall Street lost ground as Washington headed towards a government shutdown by the closing bell; Apple named top star among global brands; Surface 2 to land in Delta cockpits; American Airlines in hiring binge. Conway G. Gittens reports.
Wall Street is held hostage as Washington plays "Deal or No Deal". Lawmakers are lobbing accusations back and forth as the country heads towards a partial government shutdown when the fiscal year begins at midnight. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Majority Leader John Boehner: SOUNDBITE: SENATE MAJORITY LEADER HARRY REID (ENGLISH) SAYING: "I have a very simple message to John Boehner: Let the House vote. Stop trying to force a government shutdown." SOUNDBITE: HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER JOHN BOEHNER (ENGLISH) SAYING: "It's time for the Senate to listen to the American people just like the House has listened to the American people" But Wall Street is holding out hope that if there is a shut down it will be short lived. The last one back in 1995-1996 lasted for less than a month. Stocks closed lower, above their worst levels of the day, with Congress still bickering as of the closing bell. September continues to be a turning point for Apple. The tech company is now the world's most valuable brand, according to Interbrand, citing Apple's products for changing "the way we work, play, and communicate". Apple dethrones long-time brand champion Coca-Cola. The crowning follows up the record debut of Apple's latest iPhones. Is Microsoft's Surface 2 tablet ready to take flight? Delta hopes so. The airline will start using the newly launched tablet to replace heavy charts and manuals. It is giving the device to 11,000 pilots. The goal is for paperless cockpits by the end of next year. Meanwhile, rival American Airlines says it plans to hire 1,500 pilots and is in the process of hiring 1,500 flight attendants. The job openings will meet new regulations and operational needs as the airline comes out of bankruptcy and merges with US Airways. This year's new gaming consoles aren't even out yet but consumers are already giving the Sony PlayStation 4 the thumbs up over the Microsoft Xbox One. According to a Reuters/Ipsos poll, when asked more shoppers said they planned to buy the latest PlayStation, which is $100 cheaper than the souped-up XBox. Both consoles can be pre-ordered, hitting store shelves in Mid-November. In Europe, stocks were down due to the continuing political fiasco in Italy.