Stocks drop on worries about economy

February 17, 2009 1:13:59 PM PST
Investors are absorbing the reality of a deepening global recession -- and dumping stocks on exchanges around the world.

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Investors in the U.S. and abroad are realizing that President Barack Obama's $787 billion government stimulus can only do so much, and that the recession may take a while to run its course.

Another big worry on Wall Street is that General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC might not be able to prove by Tuesday's deadline they can repay billions of dollars in loans and return to profitability.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 297 points to 7,552, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index skidded 37 to 789 and the Nasdaq composite index fell 63 to 1,470.

Only 219 stocks rose on the New York Stock Exchange while nearly 2,900 fell. Volume came to 1.6 billion shares.

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