Stock Market Swoon
As numbers go, keep one eye on the polls and the other on the Dow.
The stock market is naturally volatile, but big swings have been known to alter races. Four years ago, a skidding Dow Jones Industrial Average caused widespread panic about a seizing economy and proved damaging to GOP nominee John McCain, whose party held the White House at the time. On one September day alone, the index fell 778 points for a drop in market value of more than $1 trillion. Three more steep drops followed in October.
In the past couple of weeks, concern about a fragile U.S. recovery and worries about economic conditions in Europe sent the markets down noticeably.
The Dow closed just below 8,000 on Obama's Inauguration Day, Jan. 20, 2009. It now tops 13,000.
By BRIAN BAKST, AP
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