Authors: Joshua Cohan
(NEW YORK) -- U.S. stocks opened higher in New York Thursday morning after the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 520 points Wednesday over debt fears here and in Europe.
At 10 a.m. Thursday, the Dow rose 135 points, or 1.7 percent, to 10,852. The markets here and abroad were buoyed by an announcement that French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet in Paris next Tuesday to discuss euro zone governance and other international issues.
Investor worries over French banks have weighed on the stocks over the past two days.
U.S. stocks skidded off the cliff again Wednesday on new worries about government debt in Europe, losing all of Tuesday's rally and then some. Gold, which surged to yet another new high yesterday, fell back $20 to $1,764 an ounce Thursday morning.
By the time the market closed, the S&P 500 was down 51 points, or 4.4 percent, while the Nasdaq fell 101 points, or 4 percent, to 2,381. But the price of gold surpassed $1,800 an ounce for the first time as investors pulled their money out of stocks and snapped up precious metals.
Wednesday was also the Dow's lowest close since Sept. 23, 2010. The recent market rout has wiped out more than $2 trillion in investor wealth in the United States.
"It's not a full-blown panic yet, but it could get there," said Art Cashin, a veteran trader at UBS. "They're not throwing things out the window quite yet, but they're not far from it if this keeps up."
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