The markets slid into negative territory after Ben Bernanke's Congressional testimony on the state of the economy today, but trading was generally low-key. "Flat is good," an economist told the Wall Street Journal. "People are getting their nerve back." The Dow ended down 45.44 at 12,608.92, the Nasdaq down 1.35 at 2,361.40, and the S&P 500 down 2.65 at 1,367.53.
Bernanke's mention of recession spooked some investors, and the IMF's downward adjustment of its forecast for US growth was also a damper, Bloomberg reports. Merck shares did especially poorly, but some other companies, including Best Buy, did well. The chain reported falling profits, but earnings beat estimates, and its stock climbed thanks to forecasts of higher earnings later in the year.