The Tech - Online EditionMIT's oldest and largest
newspaper & the first
newspaper published
on the web
Boston Weather: 45.0°F | A Few Clouds

News Briefs

Dow Jones Closes Above 11,000 THE WASHINGTON POST -- New York

The Dow Jones industrial average, the most widely watched symbol of American wealth, closed above 11,000 for the first time Monday as investors continued to sell high-flying technology stocks and buy shares in long-neglected manufacturing companies.

A late-day bargain hunt, fueled by a positive economic report, pushed the Dow average up 225.75 points, or 2.1 percent. It closed at 11,014.69.

The new milestone came just 23 trading days after the barometer of blue-chip stocks first closed above 10,000. But in that short period, the psychology of the market has changed entirely. The narrow group of technology stocks that helped burst previous records has fallen out of favor, and investors are now searching intently for bargains they missed before.

Many Wall Street officials say the change in investing patterns is healthy for the longest-running bull market in history. Americans increasingly have more of their net worth tied to the market _ 52 percent of Americans own stock directly and through mutual funds, up from 42 percent in 1997 _ and the rise in the market has enriched Americans and fueled a boom in consumer spending that has kept the U.S. economy expanding.

Clinton to Back Privacy Measures THE WASHINGTON POST -- WASHINGTON

President Clinton plans to unveil Tuesday a long-promised proposal to beef up privacy protection and other consumer rights in an age when banks, securities firms and insurers employ computer technology to amass and use huge libraries of financial and medical information about their customers.

The proposal will be one of Clinton’s most ambitious efforts to bolster consumer privacy and protections against alleged abuses by the financial industry.

The Clinton administration will ask Congress to require banks and other financial institutions to give consumers the chance to limit how much of their financial and medical records can be shared or sold to others, according to White House documents and officials familiar with the plan. How many of those restrictions would apply to sharing among affiliated companies was unclear, sources said.

The administration also will press for measures designed to ensure that financial services companies give consumers much more detail about floating credit card rates, fees for the use of automatic teller machines and other financial arrangements, sources said.

FAA Announces Required Updates For Flight, Cockpit Voice Recorders THE WASHINGTON POST -- WASHINGTON

The Federal Aviation Administration, responding to pressure from federal safety officials, announced Monday that it will require a major upgrade of aircraft flight data recorders and cockpit voice recorders to provide better information after accidents.

In particular, the FAA will require new on-board sensors to determine movements of the Boeing 737 rudder, which has been listed as the probable cause of two crashes, FAA Administrator Jane Garvey announced during a panel discussion at a National Transportation Safety Board symposium on flight recorders.

She emphasized that the agency’s forthcoming rules will follow all recommendations made by the board after it investigated the crash of a USAir 737 near Pittsburgh in 1996 and the plunge of a Swissair McDonnell Douglas MD-11 into the ocean off Nova Scotia last year.

It was highly unusual for the FAA to agree so rapidly and completely with the safety board’s recommendations. The safety board investigates accidents but has no regulatory authority.