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Thursday March 20, 1980
. . . where the 1970s live forever!

News stories from Thursday March 20, 1980


Summaries of the stories the major media outlets considered to be of particular importance on this date:

  • The hostages may be held indefinitely by Iran, according to the United States. Describing the World Court as "the most promising hope" for obtaining the release of the 50 Americans, Washington urged the court to issue an order di-ecting Iran to free them.

    Breaking relations with Iran if all else fails to win release of the American hostages has been recommended for consideration to 10 European countries by their ambassadors in Teheran, according to diplomatic sources. The envoys, who were assigned to develop joint suggestions for their governments, said that economic sanctions would heighten the crisis. [New York Times]

  • A major dispute over steel imports was set as the United States Steel Corporation said it would file suit against producers in seven West European countries, accusing them of shipping steel products at unfairly low prices. The action might lead to an international trade war, according to Common Market officials. [New York Times]
  • Cyrus Vance refused to disavow many of the operative parts of the United Nations resolution condemning Israel's settlements in Arab territory despite persistent and heated questioning by members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Secretary of State Vance in effect stood by the bulk of the resolution, which was adopted unanimously in the Security Council on March 1. Washington's vote was disavowed by President Carter two days later as a mistake. [New York Times]
  • Congress took a major step towards achieving a balanced budget when the House Budget Committee approved and sent to the House the 1981 fiscal plan that provides for a $2 billion surplus. The vote, which followed two days of impassioned debate over the equity of spending reductions, marks the first time that the House Budget Committee has approved a balanced budget since its creation in 1974. [New York Times]
  • Edward Kennedy stepped up an attack on President Carter's foreign policy. In a speech and a new package of television commercials, the Massachusetts Senator said that the policy was characterized by "incompetence, surprises and embarrassment" and had tempted the Soviet Union to send troops into Afghanistan. [New York Times]
  • A permanent closing of a nuclear plant may occur, according to a federal official. He conceded the possibility that the Three Mile Island plant, which was crippled and shut down after a reactor accident nearly a year ago, may never reopen because of opposition to the government's proposal to release radioactive gas from the reactor. About 500 people expressed bitter opposition to the plan at a nearly riotous public hearing.

    Reports on potential nuclear accidents at power plants were urged by the President's Council on Environmental Quality. The council said that federal officials had consistently avoided openly discussing the consequences of a serious accident and had thus failed to inform the public fully of the potential dangers from them. [New York Times]

  • Major changes in cancer detection tests were announced by the American Cancer Society as it eliminated some commonly used examinations from the recommendations it makes to the public and drastically reduced the frequency of others. The society said that its new guidelines, intended only for people who have no symptoms of cancer, were designed to deliver basically the same benefits as previous recommendations but at a great reduction in cost, risk and inconvenience. [New York Times]
  • Pressure on Andrei Sakharov was reported by the wife of the banished rights activist, who told her in a telegram that the Soviet security police were using force to try to make him report to their Gorky office three times a month. The physicist was banished to that city on Jan. 22, presumably for his public dissident activities. [New York Times]
  • Violation of a germ-warfare accord was denied by Moscow, according to State Department officials. The Kremlin reported, they said, that an outbreak of anthrax disease occurred in the city of Sverdlovsk last year, but insisted that it was due to improper handling of meat products and not to accidental contamination by biological warfare agents. [New York Times]
  • Fighting erupted among Cambodians in a shantytown at the Thai border where many refugees have gathered. The clashes apparently occurred between the armed band that controlled the inhabitants and others, unspecified but probably from nearby shantytowns. At least 17 persons were killed and more than 80 wounded. [New York Times]


Stock Market Report

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 789.08 (-11.86, -1.48%)
S&P Composite: 103.12 (-1.19, -1.14%)
Arms Index: 1.75

IssuesVolume*
Advances5126.86
Declines94922.20
Unchanged3913.52
Total Volume32.58
* in millions of shares

Arms Index is the ratio of volume per declining issue to volume per advancing issue; a figure below 1.0 is bullish.

Market Index Trends
DateDJIAS&PVolume*
March 19, 1980800.94104.3136.52
March 18, 1980801.62104.1047.34
March 17, 1980788.65102.2637.01
March 14, 1980811.69105.4335.18
March 13, 1980809.56105.6233.00
March 12, 1980819.54106.9237.99
March 11, 1980826.45107.7641.42
March 10, 1980818.94106.5143.54
March 7, 1980820.56106.9050.95
March 6, 1980828.07108.6549.61


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