This is WEEKEND EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. And the U.S. stock market's on a tear. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 14,000 yesterday, for the first time in more than five years. Investors seized on encouraging news about factory orders and auto sales. They chose to look past a report that unemployment inched up last month, too, to 7.9 percent. NPR's Scott Horsley reports.
The economy shrunk in the fourth quarter — for the first time in three years — and one of the critical reasons was a drop in defense spending. Apparently, contractors took precautionary steps and held onto money in case the federal government failed to avert the fiscal and tax crisis known as the fiscal cliff.
But there's now a new deadline — automatic budget cuts, known as sequestration, which may hit at the beginning of March.
Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 7:17 pm
Gun rights advocates demonstrate at the capitol in Harrisburg, Pa., on Wednesday as vendors pulled out of the city's Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show. Vendors were upset that the organizers of the event banned the sale and display of certain types of guns.
A boycott by vendors starting this weekend at one of the nation's largest hunting and fishing shows has led to the event's indefinite postponement. Pennsylvania businesses stand to lose tens of millions of dollars in revenue.
Some 200 shops and groups pulled out of the Harrisburg, Pa., event after organizers banned the sale and display of certain types of guns.
Originally published on Fri February 1, 2013 4:32 pm
By Randy Lilleston
Trader Frederick Reimer works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Friday.
Credit Richard Drew / AP
Happy days are (or might be) here again: The Dow Jones industrial average closed above 14,000 Friday, marking the first time the stock market measure has broken that barrier at close since October 2007.
The average closed at 14,009.79. That's up more than 149 points, or about 1.1 percent for the day. The closing comes hours after the release of a new monthly unemployment report that indicated jobs grew at a faster rate late last year than previously estimated.