Big Flurry in Stocks
Relapse of President Causes Great Excitement among
MOST ALL LINES SLUMP
Milwaukee Preferred, Falls Off Nearly Seven Points—Financiers Do
Not Fear Panic.
The unexpected news
from Buffalo that President McKinley’s condition had suddenly assumed
a serious aspect, and later bulletins to the effect that there were
small prospects of his recovery, caused great excitement at the
local brokers’ offices and at the chamber of commerce yesterday.
Railroad stocks, led by Milwaukee preferred, fell off all along
the line and wheat and corn each dropped half a cent a bushel.
During the day there were constant
rumors that the president had passed away, and each recurring report
caused the wildest excitement and had a tendency to further depress
the market. The wires between Milwaukee and New York were kept hot
and news of the wild excitement on the exchange at the latter city
and that the bears had taken advantage of the bad news to pull down
the principal stocks, had its reflex action here.
The leading railroad stocks fell off
all the way from 2 to 6/8
points. The stocks chiefly affected were Milwaukee, Union Pacific,
Missouri Pacific, Atchison, American Sugar, Amalgamated Copper,
Federal Steel, Rock Island, North-Western, C., C., C. & St.
L., Colorado Fuel, American Car preferred, Delaware and Hudson,
American Tobacco, General Electric and Great Northern. The heaviest
sufferers were the industrials, and General Electric felt the strain
worse than any.
It was generally conceded by brokers
that the effect of the death of President McKinley had been discounted
before the day’s business was over, and that while there would be
a further decline all along the line to-day, the worst had already
been felt. Many dealers, nevertheless, expressed satisfaction that
to-day would be a short day. An unusual and surprising feature of
the day’s decline was that the stock of the United States Steel
corporation felt the bear movement less than any other holding,
notwithstanding the great fight with the Amalgamated association
that is on its hands. It was said yesterday that this was due to
the fine generalship of Morgan and his associates. While some stocks
felt the decline less than others, all suffered more or less and
none was exempt.
The effect of the discouraging news
on wheat and corn was but slight, each showing a decline of but
half a cent a bushel. The reason for this, it was claimed, is that
grain and provisions have not received artificial support in the
past, and are necessities.