Dow Dives 391
Market had been down more than 500 at one point
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 22, 2011 3:09 PM CDT
A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Thursday.   (AP Photo/ Louis Lanzano)

(Newser) – The markets have closed on a brutal day, with US stocks joining what MarketWatch characterizes as a global selloff. At one point, the Dow was down more than 500 points, though it rebounded in the final hour. The Wall Street Journal notes that yields on 10-year Treasuries are at 1940s levels as investors seek safety. The numbers:

  • Dow: Falls 391 (3.5%) to 10,734
  • Nasdaq: Falls 83 (3.3%) to 2,456
  • S&P 500: Falls 37 (3.2%) to 1,130

Most accounts blame some combination of worries about Europe (particularly Italy) and the Fed's not-so-rosy outlook yesterday. But Felix Salmon at Reuters warns against such neat and tidy explanations. "Let’s not kid ourselves that there’s any particular reason why global stocks are falling," he writes. "As a general rule, if you see 'fears' or 'pessimism' in a market-report headline, that’s code for 'the market fell and we don’t know why,' or alternatively 'the market is volatile and yet we feel the need to impose some spurious causality onto it.'" What's worse, such "erroneous" accounts just feed into media hysteria, he adds.