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Stocks end the week down

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Stock markets fell on Friday morning as concerns about European banks and the U.S. economy continued to haunt investors.

The Dow Jones industrial average finished the day down 172.93 points, or 1.6%, to 10817.65, enough to bring the blue-chip index down 4% for the week.

The day provided little in the way of new economic data, but a number of economists announced that they were scaling back their predictions for economic growth. In addition, concern about the financial sector was amplified after Bank of America said Thursday night that it was cutting at least 3,500 jobs.

The declines built on the big losses Thursday, which came as investors worried about the health of European banks.

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Earlier in the day, leading indexes fell 1.8% in England and 1.4% in France. Markets in Asia also fell overnight.

Gold, the safe haven of choice during recent turmoil, climbed again.

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-- Nathaniel Popper


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