March 28 - Summary of business headlines: Stocks fall on economic jitters; Oil stumbles amid growing talk of reserve release; Basketball star Magic Johnson leads record purchase of LA Dodgers baseball team. Conway G. Gittens reports.
Wall Street finished lower for a second straight day as economic jitters resurfaced. A weaker-than-expected durable goods report fueled those worries. Orders for large ticket items were up in February, but nowhere near what they needed to be to make up for big losses the month before. February's reading suggests factories may not have been as busy in the opening months of the year, adding to predictions economic growth was slower. A drop in oil prices brought little relief to the market. Oil prices tumbled after a report showed a bigger-than-anticipated rise in U.S. crude supplies. Adding to the pressure: France, in the midst of a presidential campaign, is in talks with the U.S. and Britain about the possible release of oil from strategic reserves, according to several cabinet ministers. U.S. crude dropped about $2, falling below $106 a barrel. London Brent Sea crude fell to nearly $124 a barrel. Famed basketball star Earvin "Magic" Johnson has put together another winning team - it appears. Magic and a group of investors have agreed to buy the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team for $2 billion. If approved, that would be the highest price ever paid for a major U.S. sports franchise. No home runs on Wall Street where stocks lost half a percent across the board. European shares were down just over a full percent. Conway Gittens, Reuters