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Archive for Wednesday, November 3, 2004

Presidential race prompts late selloff

Analysts fear deadlock would end bullish run

November 3, 2004

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— The prospect of a tight race for the presidency -- and a repeat of the 2000 court battle -- led to a late selloff on Wall Street Tuesday, with stocks finishing the session mixed despite a fresh drop in oil prices.

News of exit polls showing a tight race were a "sell" signal to investors worried that the election would be deadlocked. Most analysts agreed that a clear winner by this morning -- no matter which candidate -- would boost the market. But if the election appeared headed for a prolonged court battle as in 2000, stocks could fall sharply.

"The worst thing that could happen is a contested election, because you'll see this bull run we've had over the past five or six days dissipate," said Peter Cardillo, chief strategist and senior vice president at S.W. Bach & Co. "If somebody can declare victory, then this bull run could extend right through to the end of the year."

The uncertainty kept investors from enjoying another drop in oil prices, taking the price of crude below the $50 per barrel mark for the first time in a month. A barrel of light crude for December delivery closed at $49.62, down 51 cents, on the New York Mercantile Exchange -- the lowest settlement price since Oct. 4.

The Dow Jones industrial average was down 18.66, or 0.2 percent, at 10,035.73. The Dow ended a streak of gains that had added 303.93, or 3.1 percent, to the index since last Tuesday.

Trading volume was higher than expected throughout the session, as early confidence in a quick victory was wiped out by signs that it would indeed be a close contest. In 2000, the markets endured their worst post-election November since Harry Truman's upset victory in 1948.

"I think there's some money just waiting to come in once we have a winner in the election," said Michael Sheldon, chief market strategist at Spencer Clarke LLC. "The uncertainty of 2000 is certainly hanging over the market, and we're hoping we don't get a repeat. If we don't, then we have a strong positive bias and a very healthy technical market."



































































Overview Unofficial election results Douglas County precinct map Election Day 2004 feedbacktext Kids Voting ResultsCounty Democrat unseats D.A. of 8 years Former mayor defeats Buhler in Senate race Embattled district judge stays on bench McElhaney survives short-lived deficit Record number of voters cast their ballots in county Douglas County kids choose Kerry Politicians, supporters share 'crazy' election-night revelry Voters approve Perry-Lecompton bond issue Township lacks candidatesState Moore fends off another challenge Ryun wins contentious 2nd District Congress seat Brownback easily defends his U.S. Senate seat Holland inches past GOP challenge Pine takes 3rd District Senate seat Wagnon wins State Board of Education race Seven incumbents lose; GOP pads majority in House Voters deny sales tax for K.C. arena Bush wins Kansas handily Kansans show they're satisfied with Bush Counties see high voter turnout Election briefsNational Too close to call President 'upbeat' on election returns Kerry sentimental as race nears end Analysis: Emotions guided presidential voting Networks use care in reporting results New media throw caution to the wind Presidential race prompts late selloff State by state results: Midwest State by state results: West State by state results: Northeast State by state results: South California backs stem-cell research Voters in 11 states approve gay-marriage bans GOP wins key states in South World riveted by U.S. electionMultimediaphoto Photo Gallery: Election Day 2004 6News video: Dennis Moore wins in a 'landslide' 6News video: Dennis Moore victory speech 6News video: Bob Johnson wins 2nd District County Commission position 6News video: Paula Gilchrist presumed Douglas County Treasurer 6News video: Ken McGovern wins sheriff's office 6News video: Jere McElhaney on the 3rd District Commissioner seat 6News video: Penrod optimistic about Douglas County Clerk position 6News video: Ermeling hopeful in 3rd District Commissioner race 6News video: Francisco likely to win 2nd Districtphoto Barbara Ballard talks about younger voters and their importance in this election.photo Barbara Ballard talks about being in Lawrence and Kansas on election night.photo Paul Davis talks about the importance of this election to the Kansas Democrats.photo Paul Davis chooses his most important race in Kansas.photo Paul Davis talks about the feeling among other Democrats in Kansas.photo Gov. Kathleen Sebelius addresses the crowd at Abe 'N Jakes Landing.

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