US Credit Downgrade Leads to 600-Point Stock Market Dive

By Ben Fractenberg on August 8, 2011 2:29pm | Updated on August 8, 2011 5:17pm

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during afternoon trading on August 5, 2011 in New York City. Stocks closed up 60 points after finishing down 512 in yesterday's session.
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during afternoon trading on August 5, 2011 in New York City. Stocks closed up 60 points after finishing down 512 in yesterday's session.
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Mario Tama/Getty Images

MANHATTAN — Stocks fell 634 points Monday in the first day of trading on Wall Street since Standard & Poor's downgraded the United State's credit rating.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 250 points just after the opening bell and finished bellow 11,000 for the first time since November, the Associated Press reported. The 634-point drop was the sharpest one-day decline in the Dow Jones since Dec. 1, 2008, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The nation's credit rating was reduced from AAA to AA+ by S&P, which said it based its downgrade decision on Congress' failure to reach a deal over the debt ceiling until the last minute and the lack of a bipartisan plan for lowering American debt.

The "degree of uncertainty around the political policy process," was a factor, David Beers, the global head of sovereign ratings at S&P, told the AP. "The nature of the debate and the difficulty in framing a political consensus ... that was the key consideration."

While Wall Street suffered, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said our nation's economy and infrastructure is foundering in comparison to the rest of the globe — and even compared to our more immediate neighbors.

“We are falling behind every country in the world,” Bloomberg said on MSNBC's Morning Joe Monday, “The new Lear Jet is being built in Mexico. Border crossings have gone down in one direction, going up in the other."

"Mexico’s economy is better than ours,” he added. "People will go where they can get jobs."

"If you don't invest in the long term, there's no short term tomorrow," Bloomberg added. "It's a spiral down, and you can't do that. The time to invest is the tough times."

The Down Jones fell 700 points last week, which was the biggest loss since the October 2008.

While S&P lowered the nation's credit rating, rival rating agency Moody's said it would still back America's AAA status, CNBC reported. But it will keep an eye on how the country handles debt moving forward and could possibly lower the rating in the future.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Mexico's economy and infrastructure is better than this nation's during an interview on MSNBC, Aug. 8, 2011.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Mexico's economy and infrastructure is better than this nation's during an interview on MSNBC, Aug. 8, 2011.
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