MarketWatch.com - Pre-Market Indications

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Firms Look to Prevent Swine Flu Pandemic, Turn a Profit -

Face-masks and hand-sanitizer are flying off the shelves and pharmaceutical stocks are skyrocketing on fears that a swine flu outbreak could go global.

Swine Flu Profit
Manufacturers of antiviral drugs, companies gearing up to produce a vaccine, even those firms that make and sell hand-sanitizer and face-masks are turning profits in an otherwise skittish and spiraling market.
(ABC News Photo Illustration)
More Photos

Even as much of the economy took a blow from news of the potential epidemic, some companies with the tools to tackle a wide outbreak have already seen a bump in their share prices and could be poised to profit if the disease continues its deadly spread around the world.

Photos splashed across newspapers worldwide Monday showed Mexicans wearing surgical-style face masks and public health professionals urged Americans to wash their hands using alcohol-base sanitizers to stem the spread of the disease.

Mask sales already saw sharp increases. By Monday evening the top two best sellers on Amazon.com in the Health and Personal Care section were face masks.

The top seller, a 3M surgical mask labeled for "bird flu" use, had sold out on Amazon. Another manufacturer, Alpha Pro Tech, announced it would increase production to keep pace with demand.

Sales of hand sanitizer have been steadily on the rise for years, and a spike in mask sales seemed noticeable on Monday. Purell, the sanitizer market leader produced by Johnson & Johnson, has seen its sales double since 2003 to nearly half or $42 million of total $90.3 million market, according to Information Resources Inc., a Chicago-based market research firm.

Related

"The hand sanitizer business will soar," said Professor Mahmud Hassan, director of the Pharmaceutical Management MBA Program at Rutgers University. "People will use more napkins and lotions. That business will go up."

Of course, J&J is a huge worldwide company with sales of over $140 billion a year, so sanitizer profits aren't likely to move the company's shares, which closed down slightly Monday in an overall bad day for stocks.

Manufacturers of antiviral drugs, companies gearing up to produce a vaccine, and those firms that make and sell low-tech products like hand-sanitizer and face-masks are turning profits in an otherwise skittish and down market.

"If this becomes a major pandemic, no one over the long-term will profit. No one makes money if everyone gets sick. In the short term, however, there are a couple of drugs that the CDC says could potentially treat swine flu and those companies are worth watching in the short term," said Dr. Mark Schoenebaum, a physician turned biotechnology analyst for Deutsche Bank.

As of Monday, some 1,600 people were suspected to have the disease in Mexico, killing as many as 149 people. In the U.S. 40 cases have been confirmed, with no related deaths recorded. The virus, considered dangerous because of an ability to pass from person to person, has also been found in Canada, Spain and the United Kingdom.

Companies gearing up for swine flu, including Roche, Gilead Sciences and GlaxoSmithKline, the manufacturers of the leading antiviral flu medications, are best positioned to see a boost in profits if the disease escalates to epidemic proportions, analysts said.

Tamiflu, which comes in pills, was developed by Gilead and manufactured by Roche. Gilead continues to collect royalties from Roche's sales of the drug. Both companies' share prices spiked soon after the U.S. government allowed for its stockpiles of the drug to be made publicly available.

Gilead stock surged to $47.53 at the end of the day Monday, up 3.78 percent. Roche rose to $31.72, up 4.34 percent.


More:
Firms Look to Prevent Swine Flu Pandemic, Turn a Profit - ABC News

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Sunday, April 26, 2009

CTV USA Canada DEA lock up Marc Emery

Alex Jones 1/9:Swine Flu Special Report

the rest of the update can be found here:
http://www.youtube.com/user/TheAlexJonesChannel

Saturday, April 25, 2009

UPDATE: Swine Flu in NYC CONFIRMED!

St. Francis Preparatory High School in Fresh Meadows, Queens. Health officials confirmed that at least 8 students probably have the swine flu after a senior trip to Mexico.

Swine flu in NYC?


2009_04_swineflumex.jpg
Photo taken in Mexico City where 61 have died by Miguel Tovar/AP
The Health Department is conducting tests to determine whether swine flu has found its way into our area after 75 students at a Queens high school turned up sick with potential symptoms for the virus. Students from St. Francis Prep in Fresh Meadows are being tested after dozens have reported nausea, fever, dizzyness, aches and pains. One student told NY1, "My chest is really tight, it feels like a 20-pound baby is sitting on my chest. I have shortness of breath, I can't even walk up the steps, and as you can hear I'm stuffy and my coughing is getting really bad."

There are no confirmed cases of swine flu in the city and initial results from the first students tested are said to be coming back negative. Concerns about the potential of an outbreak at St. Francis Prep have arisen since some students had just visited Mexico over Spring Break.

In Mexico City, 61 people have already died as a result of swine flu. Schools have been closed, museums shut down and residents urged to avoid hospitals if they are not suffering from serious conditions. A Center for Disease Control spokesman said, "We are very, very concerned. We have what appears to be a novel virus, and it has spread from human to human. It's all hands on deck at the moment."

Health Department officials will be sanitizing St. Francis Prep over the weekend. They said that they are implementing "enhanced citywide influenza surveillance" to identify any possible cases that may develop. Here is a CDC FAQ addressing key facts regarding swine flu.


Swine Flu Concerns After 75 Turn Up Sick at Queens HS - Gothamist: New York City News, Food, Arts & Events

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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Democrats Set To Fight For NY Medical Marijuana Bill

Please grant this Jesus!
Bottom line:Marijuana heals cancer in the form of hemp oil, not by smoking. read my older post and watch rick simpson's hemp oil video. every one i showed this to was blown away including yours truly. this is one of those dark secrets the pharmacuticals companies pray(to satan) never gets out.
my bet is if it is legal to smoke for health reasons the oil will still be illegal like other states that have "legalized" the weed.
http://st0ckman.blogspot.com/2008/02/youtube-run-from-cure-rick-simpson.html
-st0ckman


New York
-------
ALBANY - Legalization of marijuana for medical use may have a shot at legislative approval this year because Democrats, who now control the Senate and Assembly, are sponsoring identical bills on the issue.

State Senate Health Committee Chairman Thomas Duane and state Assembly Health Committee Chairman Richard Gottfried, both Manhattan Democrats, are backing the legislation, which would allow patients to have up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana and 12 mature plants.

"There are thousands of New Yorkers with serious debilitating, life-threatening, painful ailments who would benefit from the medical use under physician supervision ... of marijuana," Gottfried said Tuesday. "The medical science is very clear and very well established that there are many patients for whom marijuana will ameliorate their symptoms or help them to tolerate their treatment, where other medications do not work."

Thirteen other states have legalized marijuana, and legislation is under consideration in New Jersey, New Hampshire and other states, Gottfried said. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has said the government will respect state laws on medical marijuana with regard to enforcement, Gottfried said. In the past, federal law enforcement has shut down dispensaries for medical marijuana because pot is an illegal drug.

"This is about compassion. This is about medicine. This isn't about politics," Duane said.

Marijuana has been used to relieve nausea, increase appetite, reduce muscle spasms and reduce chronic pain in patients with debilitating illnesses like AIDS, cancer, multiple sclerosis and glaucoma.

Duane said he believes the legislation enjoys broad bipartisan support in the Senate, where there are 32 Democrats and 30 Republicans.

Republicans, who outnumbered Democrats from 1965 until this year, previously blocked any legalization bill from moving forward. There has been Republican support in the past for limited use of pot by allowing state-regulated growers to produce it and licensed dispensaries to distribute it.

The Assembly, where Democrats hold the overwhelming majority of seats, passed the legislation in 2007 and 2008.

Duane said allowing patients to grow their own pot is a simpler way to provide access than dispensaries. Patients would need a doctor's recommendation to possess and use marijuana.

If the bill passes both houses, Gov. David Paterson will seek input from interested parties before acting, spokesman Errol Cockfield said.

People who oppose medical marijuana think it could increase drug abuse and crime. The state Conservative Party believes legalizing it would send the wrong message to society, chairman Mike Long said.

"We have enough trouble with the use of prescription drugs without adding another one to it," he said, adding there are plenty of drugs available currently to relieve pain.

If people are allowed to grow it in their homes, children and others in the house may gain access to it, Long said.

Assemblyman Joel Miller, R-Poughkeepsie, said the time has come for New York to legalize medical marijuana.

"To me it's absolutely amazing that we would deny people the benefit of a drug simply because it also has some other impact on the community," said Miller, a dentist. "The people who need it are not going to be using it recreationally. They're going to use it so they can some standard of life and everyone deserves that."

The legislation would require plants to be kept in a secure, locked enclosure. It includes provisions for the state Department of Health to give permits to dispensaries, pending certification by the federal government that this could be done without federal prosecution.

Supporters of the legislation include the state Medical Society, the New York State Nurses Association and a long list of other groups, Gottfried said.

A 2007 Mason-Dixon poll commissioned by the Marijuana Policy Project surveyed 500 New York voters in several upstate Senate districts and found that between 61 percent and 76 percent of them were in favor of allowing seriously ill patients to use marijuana if it was recommended by their physician. The Marijuana Policy Project also promotes legalization of marijuana for general use.


NORML.ORG US NY: Democrats Set To Fight For NY Medical Marijuana Bill

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UAE Torture Tapes Revealed Video

WARNING GRAPHIC UAE Torture Tapes Revealed Video


WARNING GRAPHIC UAE Torture Tapes Revealed

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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Economic collapse

The stock markets have gone up for six straight weeks. That's a pretty strong sign of a top. Our financial system continues to come unglued as Goldman Sachs leads the looting of the treasury after a financial coup d'├ętat that has stolen $46,000 from each taxpayer to hand it over to the banks now running the country. After over $13.6 trillion has been poured into the banking system, I cannot see that a person I know has been enriched by even a single cent but each American is now indebted to the tune of an additional $46,000.

It's going to end badly. We are not at the bottom; we aren't even near the bottom. In terms of the Great Depression, we are in 1931 or so; the bottom is ahead of us. I expect the dollar to default in the next few months after a General Motors and Chrysler bankruptcy convinces everyone that we are truly in a depression.

US Bonds are on the brink of a collapse. When they do, the dollar will tank and interest rates soar. As measured by John Williams at ShadowStats.com, the real pre-Clinton unemployment rate is above 20%.

I've called for riots by summer but even I have been startled by the number of mass murders in the United States in the last month or so. It's the economy, stupid.

It's going to get worse, much worse as the insane financial policies of both political parties over the past fifty years come to their inevitable conclusion. The United States is bankrupt and soon the rest of the world will realize it. The days of writing checks in the firm belief the rest of the world will not cash them are over. The United States has had 89 years of being able to live beyond our means as a result of being the world's reserve currency. It's over and the deconstruction of the United States has begun.

The risk of World War III being ignited by a US/Israeli attack on Iran has diminished considerably under Obama. However daily pronouncements out of Israel serve to remind us that a Zionist nuclear attack on Iran is still the #1 goal of Israel notwithstanding the 16 US intelligence agencies that all conclude Iran does not have a nuclear weapons program. Israel made it clear under the Clean Break from the Peace Process that they intend to attack anyone who might be a threat to them at some point in the future, no matter how distant.

Derivatives as measured by the BIS showed as $684 trillion [pdf] as of last June. A more current report will come out in a month. I expect it to show an increase in OTC derivatives. That's insane.

I saw the danger in the mere size of derivatives in January of 2002. They were out of control then. Now they are seven times larger and growing. And not a single "expert" in the Obama administration understands the danger of a $700 trillion dollar casino with no regulation and everyone playing with monopoly money. It allows companies such as Goldman Sachs to destroy companies, indeed countries with no risk to themselves. After all, the taxpayers of the United States have assumed all the risk of failure.

Gold is a safe haven and will remain a safe haven. Paper gold may well disappear along with all the other monopoly money assets. We are in for another massive deleveraging that may well drag precious metals shares with it. The safest shares to be in will be those of producing gold and silver companies.

Hunker down. This summer is going to get really fugly. [Editor's note: Fugly - I do LOVE this word.]

Bob Moriarty
President: 321gold


Apr 20, 2009 A Crash this way Cometh Bob Moriarty 321gold ...s

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Move Your Money Out of the Country...and Soon

Things are getting uncomfortable for individuals and corporations looking to deposit their money in tax havens around the world. Just recently, Congress introduced the so-called “Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act,” which is designed to do away with the privacy afforded by doing business or investing outside the U.S. and to eliminate or reduce tax benefits available offshore. Simon Black and Fitzroy McLean, ex-CIA operatives, investment pros, and globe-trotting editors of Casey Research’s Without Borders, weigh in with their no-holds-barred opinion on the topic…


We are patriots. We have proudly served in our country’s military, have extended a helping hand to its public sector, and have plowed our entrepreneurial enterprise into its once fertile soil. We love America, but these days, America does not love us back. It takes without giving and squelches free enterprise. These days, America is no longer the land of the free, especially when it comes to the market.

Just look at the headlines, seemingly ripped from the pages of Atlas Shrugged: Unconscionably large bank bailouts. Punishing regulations and tax requirements. An arctic business climate. Government money bombs. Riots and protests. Slowing trade. Protectionist rhetoric. Demonized corporate executives. Even pirates hijacking cargo ships. One can guess what will happen next.

We predict the next several years will usher in larger, more obtrusive governments, resulting in a decline of personal liberty and financial privacy. The world will become increasingly polarized between two groups: those who consider government intervention a great idea, and the rest of us who happen to be sane.

As such, you can bet your last falling dollar on some absolute certainties: bank nationalization is a given, at least de facto if not de jure; taxes are going up on those of us with any money left; the Fed’s money blitzkriegs will spark a blaze of inflation; and financial privacy will be a thing of the past in the United States.

The obvious and necessary solution is to position one’s finances outside of the United States, and to do so now, while the narrow and finite window of opportunity is still open.

To be clear, evading (or even avoiding) taxes at this point is not a wise move, given the size and scope of the ever-growing IRS. But there are significant advantages to expatriating your capital now:

For starters, you will actually have control of your own money. Yes, in certain instances you’ll be obliged to tell the IRS exactly where it is and what you’re doing with it, but no government agency will have the authority to reach into your overseas pocket and freeze or expropriate (read: steal) on a whim just so Team Obama can give it away to pay for someone else’s McMansion. Plus, when exchange controls are implemented and Americans are forbidden from wiring money overseas, your capital will already be secured in another jurisdiction, where you will be free to do what you want with it.

Secondly, you will no longer have to assume the risk of insolvent banks or go through the hassle of petitioning the government to get your FDIC insurance bailout. Many overseas banks are far better capitalized than those in the United States, and some of them are in jurisdictions with constitutionally protected banking privacy.

Lastly, and probably most importantly, moving money overseas gives you a last chance at diversifying out of the dollar, which, in a very short period of time, will barely be worth the paper on which it’s printed.

Bank and Brokerage Accounts

Opening a foreign bank or brokerage account is easier said than done; the United States government severely restricts where and under what terms you can open a bank account, invest in a fund, or engage in other economic activities that facilitate the protection of and access to your assets. As the signatory on an overseas account, you are required by law to inform the federal government on Treasury form TDF 90.22 by the end of June each year. Ostensibly, this has been done in the name of fighting money laundering, but it has the effect of severely restricting your freedom of financial movement.

Many foreign banks simply won’t work with you… don’t worry, it’s nothing personal. Uncle Sam has been beating them down since the Reagan years, and between Qualified Intermediary rules, tax treaties, and the USA PATRIOT Act, Sammy gives himself a lot of regulation to bury the opposition with.

There are some jurisdictions that are still excellent banking centers; Switzerland may have rolled over, but Panama, Uruguay, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates have thus far ignored the call for “greater transparency” (read: government access to private finance).
Some individual banks, like Credicorp and Global Bank in Panama, or Banco Itau in Uruguay will not work with U.S. citizens anymore, but there is still opportunity with the hundreds of remaining banks in these jurisdictions.

Similarly, opening a foreign brokerage account is a shrewd move, not only to move your money overseas but also to have greater access to financial markets. Remember when world markets tanked on Martin Luther King Day 2008? If you were a U.S.-based investor and wanted to sell, sell, sell, you had to wait a full 24 hours until the markets opened after the holiday on Tuesday morning. If you had been invested with global depository shares through a foreign brokerage, you could have saved yourself several points and gotten out in time.
We would suggest looking at Saxo Bank in Denmark.

Bullion Storage

If you have gold, it would be highly beneficial to get it out of the U.S. – stat. If you do keep it in the U.S., your only truly reliable and private option is to store it yourself in a safe that you bury in your backyard. Otherwise, move it out of the U.S. now before Team Obama pulls an FDR and takes your gold from you.

At the moment, gold is not considered a monetary instrument by the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol, so there is no legal requirement to declare your bullion upon leaving the United States. Some countries, like Taiwan and Uruguay, require you to declare gold in excess of a certain value to customs officials upon entry.

We recommend Panama, Austria, Switzerland, and the United Arab Emirates as locations to store bullion; one particular favorite is a location called Das Safe (www.dassafe.com) in Vienna where anonymous safes start at 400 euro/year.

Real Estate

It might sound counterintuitive after the subprime debacle, but real estate is a sound option for moving money outside of the United States; there are zero reporting requirements. It’s your business where you own property, and (so far) no one else’s. You can purchase property in a private way by setting up a corporate structure to hold the assets so that they’re not in your name (Panama is an excellent jurisdiction to set this up), and although there are many places with depressed real estate markets, there are also many with good growth potential: in Latin America, we would recommend Panama, Colombia, Uruguay, and Chile. In Europe: Slovakia, Albania, and Poland. In the rest of the world: Lebanon, Hainan Island (China), the Philippines, Cambodia, and New Zealand.

Time is of the essence – start looking for your safe haven now.

About The Author

Without Borders is Casey Research’s monthlynewsletter dedicated to finding the best global investment opportunities and the most beautiful places to live and do business.

If you are interested in specific strategies for moving money overseas and diversifying out of the dollar –whether it’s overseas bank accounts, real estate purchases, commodity currencies, or offshore brokerages — Fitzroy and Simon tell you the safest and most robust places to park your dollars while they’re still strong and widely accepted… places that will keep your personal economy strong even as the dollar and the U.S. economy suffer. They investigate outstanding investment opportunities, companies, and stocks you won’t hear about on CNBC as well as lucrative overseas deals that they themselves scope out and test.

If you want to think, invest, and live outside the box, test Without Borders now risk-free – via our 3-month trial subscription with 100% money-back guarantee. Click here to learn more.





Move Your Money Out of the Country...and Soon | EFAM | Escape From America Magazine

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Friday, April 10, 2009

Reuters AlertNet - BIRD FLU FOUND IN VACCINES

Deerfield, IL-based Baxter International has confirmed that vaccine shipments sent to subcontractors in Czech Republic, Slovenia and Germany were contaminated with live H5N1 avian flu viruses. The contaminated product, which Baxter calls "experimental virus material," was a mix of H3N2 seasonal flu viruses and H5N1 viruses produced at the company's research facility in Orth-Donau. The problem was discovered when ferrets inoculated with the experimental mix died. Baxter was notified on February 6, but has kept quiet about the details surrounding the mix-up, the Canadian Press reports.


mOrE:

Reuters AlertNet - European lab accidents raise biosecurity concerns

19 Mar 2009 17:39:12 GMT
Source: Reuters
* Bird flu and Ebola virus accidents raise biosecurity fears
* European states urged to improve lab accident disclosure
* Northern Europe reports most lab-acquired infections

- Lab accidents involving bird flu and Ebola viruses have increased biosecurity fears in Europe, where public health experts say research on dangerous pathogens needs to be more strictly monitored. A scientist in Germany last week pricked herself with a needle that was believed to be contaminated with a strain of the Ebola haemorrhagic virus with a mortality rate of around 90 percent. She is still under observation in hospital.

That accident added to public health concerns following the recent disclosure that deadly H5N1 bird flu virus samples were mixed with seasonal flu samples at a Baxter International contracted laboratory in Austria. Health authorities and industry groups reviewing European lab safety standards concluded in a new report that scientists and managers needed to be better trained in ways to prevent, handle and report such incidents. While stressing that research on viruses and pathogens is important for vaccine, drug and diagnostic development, the group Biosafety Europe said "it also represents a risk to the population in case those organisms may spread in the environment due to a laboratory accident, poor laboratory practices or intentional removal and subsequent release (terrorist attack)." "Adequate technical and physical containment measures and best biosafety and biosecurity practices must be implemented in those facilities to prevent accidental or intentional release of dangerous pathogens," it said in the recommendations, published on www.biosafety-europe.eu/FinalConsiderations_PDFs.html Security experts say viruses and other biological agents could be used as weapons, as occurred in 2001 in the United States when envelopes containing anthrax were sent to media outlets and U.S. lawmakers, kiling five people. HUMAN ERROR Baxter spokesman Chris Bona said the Illinois-based company learned in February about the H5N1 contamination, which was due to "a combination of process, technical and human error." The flu virus samples were meant only for testing and not vaccine or product development, according to the spokesman, who said Baxter has "put corrective measures in place" after the accident but declined to give details "for proprietary reasons." All 37 people exposed to the mixture at subcontractor sites in Germany, the Czech Republic and Slovenia, and at AVIR Greenhills Biotechnology, an Austrian company that bought the samples, tested negative for H5N1 bird flu, Bona said. The World Health Organisation (WHO) fears that virus, which has killed 256 people since 2003, could trigger a deadly flu pandemic if it mutates and starts to spread more easily. Biosafety Europe's project coordinator Kathrin Summermatter said that better training and more collaboration on safety standards could help reduce pathogen risks in European labs. "We found that even though there are European guidelines concerning biosafety, the awareness, the implementation and the control was not the same in the different European countries," she told Reuters by email. The group's report, compiled before the recent bird flu and Ebola accidents, said that Northern European countries disclosed more laboratory-acquired infections than other parts of Europe, "which in part may reflect reporting differences." Summermatter said greater transparency about incidents that do occur was essential to help identify and reduce risks: "It is important to learn from the experience of other laboratories." (Editing by Mark Trevelyan)
AlertNet news is provided by



-YEAH OK IT WAS NOT FOR HUMAN USE! I TRUST YOU. YEAH RIGHT -st0ckman

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Repost: Why the markets MUST be closed on Good Friday

Good Friday Trading-Free Since 1907 Panic
Bloomberg.com: Exclusive

By Coincidence or Not, Good Friday Trading-Free Since '07 Panic

By Chris Dolmetsch

March 21 (Bloomberg) -- The New York Stock Exchange is closed today, as it has been every Good Friday for nearly a century and a half except for in 1898, 1906 and 1907.

That last one was in the same year as the infamous Panic of 1907, when the value of U.S. stocks plunged by more than a third. Hence, a legend that persists 101 years later: Traders get to stay home the Friday before Easter not just because it's a Christian holy day but because of its association with one of history's great bear markets.

Brooks P. Nelson, a second-generation professional investor, remembers his father telling him the story every year: ``He used to say, `It's closed on Good Friday because of the panic of aught-seven,''' Nelson, 53, said in a telephone interview. Rumor had it that in 1907, ``the good Irish-Catholic traders said, `We told you not to open on Good Friday.'''

Supposedly, the tale went, the market behaved so badly that the exchange vowed never to allow trading on Good Friday again. Circumstantial evidence aside, market historians and the NYSE itself say the story is without foundation.

``I have no evidence in the archives that I've seen or the notes of the details that would prove that theory,'' said Robert F. Bruner, co-author of ``The Panic of 1907,'' published last year, and dean of the University of Virginia's Darden Graduate School of Business Administration. ``The panic itself occurred in October 1907, although in March of 1907, there was a significant break in the market.''

A Good Good Friday

Jeffrey A. Hirsch, editor of ``Stock Trader's Almanac,'' said that downturn started March 13, when the Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbled 3.9 percent, and continued the next day, when it lost 8.3 percent. Good Friday in 1907 fell on March 29, when he said the Dow climbed 2.5 percent.

The bear market began after the market peaked in September 1906. By November 1907, the value of all listed U.S. shares had plunged 37 percent, and at least 25 banks and 17 trust companies collapsed.

Among them were New York's Knickerbocker Trust, where rumors of financial problems triggered a run on banks in the city and contributed to the crash, according to the NYSE's Web site. The crisis ultimately prompted the creation of the Federal Reserve system.

``Closing on Good Friday doesn't appear to coincide with any market panic or crash,'' said Ray Pellecchia, a spokesman for the Big Board. The exchange's records go back to 1864 and show trading only on those three Good Fridays in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, he said.

Only Non-Federal Holiday

The Friday before Easter is the only one of nine stock- market holidays that isn't also a federal holiday. Other U.S. stock, options and derivatives exchanges, including the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, are also shut today. The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association recommends that bond markets close in Japan, the U.K. and the U.S.

The exchange has a rich Irish-Catholic heritage and was once steeped in religious observances, said Peter Kenny, a managing director of institutional sales at Knight Equity Markets in Jersey City, N.J., who worked at the NYSE for 28 years. That made trading on Good Friday out of the question, he said.

``It was never open to debate, never, ever,'' said Kenny, whose grandfather, legendary U.S. government bond trader Christopher Devine, built **Our Lady of Victory chapel near Wall Street for convenient confessions. ``People were expected to go to Our Lady of Victory on Wednesday and Thursday, all of Holy Week.''

`Insufficient Demand'

Bruner, the author, said there's a simple explanation for why markets shut down on Good Friday: ``The financial institutions close on holidays, frankly, out of the belief that there is insufficient demand, insufficient trading activity and insufficient business,'' he said. ``I doubt the theory that closing on Good Friday was related to the panic of 1907.''

Nelson, president of Nelson Roberts Investment Advisors in Palo Alto, California, said he has no idea whether there's truth to what he was told by his father, Philip, who worked in Manhattan's financial industry for almost 20 years before moving to the West Coast.

``It's one of those things,'' Nelson said. ``Wall Street lore.''



**Our Lady Of Victory - was a common, sometimes daily pit stop for yours truly. -st0ckman



Francis Cardinal Spellman founded Our Victory Church at Pine and William Streets in the financial district of Manhattan, in 1944. It is known as the War Memorial Church, and at the front door, there is a quotation from Cardinal Spellman:

“This Holy Shine is dedicated to Our Lady of Victory in Thanksgiving for Victory won by our Valiant dead,
our soldier’s blood, our Country’s tears, shed to defend men’s rights and win back men’s hearts to God”









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