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Stock Market Plunges as Obama Takes Office

Barack Obama's inauguration may have been a joyous occasion for millions of Americans, but it was a somber reminder for Wall Street that the nation's economic problems won't be easily solved.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped four percent Tuesday to below 8,000, and the Nasdaq fell more than five percent, marking the worst inauguration day stock market performance in the index's 124-year history.

The Bush administration has already spent more than $300 billion to prop up failing U.S. banks. While such measures may have fought off outright disaster, they have yet to stabilize a still volatile U.S. economy. President Obama has indicated he'll make the economy the foremost priority of his new administration, repeatedly pushing for the passage of a stimulus package from Congress, but Wall Street continues to remain wary of the federal government's ability to substantially improve a bleak financial outlook.



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