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Japanese Nuclear Crisis Rattles Financial Markets; Dow Has Biggest Drop Since August

NEW YORK (AP/CBSNewYork) -- Fears that a nuclear reactor in Japan may be in the midst of a partial meltdown is shaking financial markets.

PHOTOS: Devastation In Japan

Stock indexes lost 2 percent and gave up nearly all of their gains for the year Wednesday. All 10 company groups that make up the Standard & Poor's 500 index fell.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 242 points, or 2 percent, to 11,613. It was the biggest drop for the index since August 11.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index lost 25, or 2 percent, to 1,257. The Nasdaq composite fell 51, or 1.9 percent, to 2,617.
Three stocks fell for every one that rose on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume came to 1.4 billion shares.

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