The stock market dropped sharply Friday and closed at a new low for the year. The Dow Jones average of 30 industrials fell 39.45 points to 3,136.58.
MORTGAGE RATES RISE. Thirty-year, fixed-rate mortgages averaged 8.01 percent this week, up from 7.93 percent last week, according to a national survey released Friday by the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. On one-year adjustable rate mortgages, lenders were asking an average initial rate of 4.97 percent, down from 5.01 percent last week. The rates do not include add-on fees known as points.
Many of the nation's top economic forecasters are scaling back even more their already weak projections for economic growth next year, according to a survey.
The consensus forecast of 52 economists, surveyed earlier this month, is that the economy will grow just 2.7 percent in 1993. The forecast has fallen by 0.1 percentage point each month since June, when it called for 3.1 percent growth.
Robert J. Eggert, editor of the Blue Chip Economic Indicators, the Sedona, Ariz., newsletter that conducts the monthly surveys, said half the economists lowered their forecasts in October. Nine raised their estimates while 17 were unchanged, he said.
The economists' most dramatic turnaround, however, has been their prediction of the presidential election results next month: Seventy-six percent of the 49 forecasters now say Democrat Bill Clinton will win, while only 12 percent expect President Bush to win. In April, 84 percent predicted Bush would be re-elected.
REFORM BILLS DIE. Legislation aimed at protecting the clients of financial advisers and reforming the $2.3-trillion bond market that finances the national debt failed to make it through Congress this year. Those bills bogged down in jurisdictional disputes between congressional committees and wide differences in the House and Senate versions when time ran out.
PHONE HELP SOUGHT. It's time for the government to step in to help fight the multimillion-dollar problem of telephone toll fraud, the Federal Communications Commission was told Friday. Lawrence Gessini, the director of International Communications Association, suggested that the FCC coordinate the telecommunication industry's development and application of guidelines to help make systems less vulnerable to abuses.
A $46,500 HUMMER. A civilian version of the jeeplike military truck that helped haul troops during Persian Gulf war went on sale Friday with a $46,500 price tag for a basic model. AM General Corp., which has its headquarters in South Bend, Ind., introduced the Hummer civilian version with national advertising and a roll-out ceremony.
JUICE FUTURES FALL. Orange juice futures prices fell to a six-year low Friday on the New York Cotton Exchange after the government predicted the largest Florida harvest in 13 years. Frozen concentrated orange juice for November delivery fell 6.8 cents to 96.60 cents a pound.
LINCARE COMPLETES DEAL. Lincare Holdings Inc., a Clearwater health company, has completed acquisition of Advance Home Health Services Inc., a Cincinnati provider of home respiratory therapy services with annual sales of $3-million. The acquisition is Lincare's sixth since it went public in March. The other five purchased companies had combined annual revenues of $5-million. Lincare also reported six-month revenues of $55.3-million and a net profit of $5.2-million or 44 cents a share for the period ended June 30. Lincare provides oxygen and respiratory therapy to patients at home in 27 states through 115 operating centers.
DOW DOLLAR YIELD
30 industrials vs. Japanese yen 30-year U.S. bond
3136.58 121.80 7.44
-39.45 +0.10 Unch.