We talked yesterday about how bleak things looked here at home for the economy. Overnight, world markets reacted to our tumble with somersaults of their own. Tokyo was down 5.3% as Japan infused $24B into its economy to try and head off disaster. Hong Kong was down 5.7%, Seoul 5.4%, Taiwan 4.7%, and China 3.2%. London opened 1.5% lower while the FTSE-100 was down 80.2 points. Oil prices fell to below $92 per barrel and the dollar fell against the yen. Lehman Brothers units all over the world are wreaking havoc on their markets. Things are bleak.
Today won’t bring better news. AIG, the world’s largest insurer, had its credit ratings cut yesterday and is just breaths from going the way of Lehman Brothers. In the meantime, Washington Mutual is having its own issues and could be next on the chopping block. As I write this, the US markets won’t open for a few more minutes. We’ll see what happens.