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Nasdaq to suspend trading Tuesday

From Bloomberg News

Nasdaq Stock Market Inc. said Thursday that it would close Tuesday in honor of former President Ford. The New York Stock Exchange may shut down as well but had not announced plans as of late Thursday.

A full-day closure for the NYSE, the world’s largest stock exchange, would continue an almost four-decade tradition of marking presidents’ deaths by halting trading for an entire day.

The Big Board was waiting to hear directly from the White House before making a decision on whether to close, exchange spokesman Richard Adamonis said.

U.S. futures and options exchanges also said no decision had been made on closing.

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Nasdaq Chief Executive Robert Greifeld said in a statement that the all-electronic exchange would close in accordance with the national day of mourning declared by President Bush.

Normal trading will resume Wednesday.

The NYSE, owned by New York-based NYSE Group Inc., has been closed at least part of the day for every presidential funeral since William McKinley’s in 1901, according to information on the NYSE website.

The last five deaths, stretching back to Dwight Eisenhower’s in 1969, have been marked by the exchange with an all-day suspension. Ford, the 38th U.S. president, died this week at 93.

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A Tuesday closure would mean a four-day suspension of NYSE trading, including the weekend and New Year’s Day. That would be the longest stretch since the six-day halt after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in 2001.

Bush ordered all government agencies and departments to close Tuesday, except for offices essential to national security.

The Federal Reserve’s headquarters in Washington will be closed, but Fed district banks will be open. The central bank said minutes of the December meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee would be delayed until Wednesday. They had been scheduled for release Tuesday.


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