July 11 - Summary of business headlines: House Republican leader says no deal on budget, debt ceiling talks; Alcoa profit doubles as revenues jump 27 percent; Stocks fall on Washington ambiguity, Italy worries; Oil prices fall. Conway G Gittens reports.
Political ambiguity in Washington, adding to investor uncertainty on Wall Street. President Obama had Republicans and Democrats at the White House as the two sides try to hammer out a deal to raise the debt limit and fix the budget. The high stakes meeting follows-up a break down in talks this weekend. Democrats are pushing for tax hikes to get the budget in line, while Republicans are pushing for deeper spending cuts. House Republican leader John Boehner. SOUNDBITE: JOHN BOEHNER, REPUBLICAN, SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Our disagreement is over the idea of raising taxes on the very people that we are asking to create jobs in our country." The U.S. faces an August deadline before running the risk of a default. Wall Street experts say a U.S. default would have negative implications for markets around the globe. Earnings season began after the closing bell with mixed results out of Alcoa. The aluminum giant saw revenues jump a better-than-expected 27 percent. Earnings doubled from a year ago, but came in at the low-end of analysts forecasts. But the big worry of the day was reserved for Italy. Investors fear Italy will be the next country engulfed in an ongoing European debt crisis. And it was that fear that weighed heavily on banks in the U.S. prompting Wall Street's biggest one-day sell-off since the first of June. European banks were also hit hard, leading to triple-digit losses in Germany and France. Oil prices fell more than a buck to settle to above $95 a barrel in New York trade. Conway Gittens, Reuters