October 29, 2008

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Reporting on the Dow: Does what goes up must come down?

Is the glass half full or half empty?

Newspaper front pages couldn’t decide today as they reported on a rally that added 889 points to the Dow.

“Optimism sends stock soaring,” the San Francisco Chronicle said across its front page. “Dow takes stunning jump — 2nd-best ever,” The Denver Post said.

The News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C., charted the upturn inside its nameplate. The Boston Globe explained how it happened: “Bargain hunters pounce amid signs of credit thaw.”

Like many, the Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel charted the stock market’s gain. But it said: “Dow soars — but hold applause.” Explained The Gazette of Colorado Spring, Colo.: “Soaring Dow is Simply Another Day of Volatility.”

Indeed, The News Journal of Wilmington, Del., said, “Rocketing Dow fails to spread much joy.” “Wall Street on edge despite Dow’s surge,” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution noted.

The Wall Street Journal charted “Mixed Signals” — the Dow rebound and a decline in consumer confidence. The Indianapolis Star gave the stock market an up arrow but used a down arrow to describe consumers’ mood.

The Lincoln (Neb.) Journal Star was one newspaper that was both optimistic and pessimistic: “Stocks surge 889 points,” the lead headline said. “But analysts don’t expect rally to last in this volatile market.”

In advance of today’s expected cut in the interest rate by the Fed, The Miami Herald said: “Cut in rate to take aim at pessimism.”

Today’s campaign news: The Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader described a “A whinnying ticket.” Horse owners through the thoroughbred registry, it reports, are reserving such names as “Joe the Plumber” and “First Dude.”

Speaking of Joe, he’s on the campaign trail, reports The Cincinnati Enquirer, which printed a photo of Joe Wurzelbacher stumping for the McCain-Palin ticket in southwest Ohio.

Kate Kennedy is front-pages editor at the Newseum.

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