Stocks mostly fall
on bank ratings
n NEW YORK - A cautious forecast from FedEx Corp. and a ratings downgrade of 18 banks gave investors new reasons to worry about the economy.
FedEx issued a weak profit forecast and downbeat comments about the economy. Analysts look to shipping companies' business as a gauge of the economy's strength.
Financial stocks saw some of the biggest losses after Standard amp& Poor's cut its ratings and revised outlooks on big banks.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 7.49, or 0.1 percent, to 8,497.18. The Samp&P 500 index fell 1.26, or 0.1 percent, to 910.71, and the Nasdaq composite index rose 11.88, or 0.7 percent, to 1,808.06.
Standard amp& Poor's cuts
ratings on 18 banks
n NEW YORK - Credit ratings agency Standard amp& Poor's on Wednesday cut ratings on 18 banks amid concern about further weakening in the financial sector.
Samp&P said the changes reflected its assessment that volatility will remain in the financial sector and the industry is expected to face tighter regulatory oversight. Samp&P also said loan losses, which have plagued the industry for more than a year, are likely to continue to increase and could grow beyond expectations.
BBamp&T Corp., Capital One Financial Corp., Regions Financial Corp. and Wells Fargo amp& Co. were among the largest banks that saw their ratings cut by Samp&P.
Ratings were also cut on Associated Banc Corp., Astoria Financial Corp., Carolina First Bank, Citizens Republic Bancorp Inc., Comerica Inc., Fifth Third Bancorp, Huntington Bancshares Inc., KeyCorp, Susquehanna Bancshares Inc., Synovus Financial Corp., U.S. Bancorp, Webster Financial Corp., Whitney Holding Corp. and Wilmington Trust Corp.
Chrysler to restart
seven assembly plants
n DETROIT - Chrysler Group LLC plans to restart seven assembly plants at the end of June after silencing all of its factories during its six-week stay in Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
The company on Wednesday confirmed that factories in Sterling Heights and Warren, Mich.; St. Louis; Toledo, Ohio; Brampton and Windsor, Ontario; and Toluca, Mexico, would restart operations June 29. A plant in Detroit that makes the Dodge Viper sports car restarted Monday.
In addition, parts stamping, engine and transmission factories that feed those plants also will restart June 29, Chrysler said in a statement.