As if Wall Street wasn't already uneasy about the bumpy month of August, now investors are concerned about the increasing possibility of U.S. military strikes against President Bashar Assad's regime in Syria. This new anxiety took stocks down yesterday and pushed the price of oil to the highest level in a year and a half. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 1.1 percent to a two-month low.The Standard & Poor's 500 index lost 1.6 percent, while the Nasdaq composite shed 2.2 percent.
- Two economic reports are expected today. The pending home sales index for July is due out from the National Association of Realtors. And the Labor Department is set to release its monthly metro unemployment data. Those reports are due out at 10 a.m.
- Sprint is eliminating about 800 customer service jobs because fewer people are calling its centers. With growth in other parts of the business, however, Sprint said it expects the company's workforce to remain at about 40,000.Sprint Corp. said most of the affected workers were notified last Thursday. Others will be told next month after Sprint figures out which additional positions will be cut.
- Casino operator Las Vegas Sands Corp. has agreed to pay $47.4 million after failing to flag millions of dollars in money transfers made by a gambler linked to drug trafficking. In return, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Los Angeles will not seek an indictment against the casino operator. Las Vegas Sands Corp. owns the Venetian and Palazzo resorts in Las Vegas, as well as similar resorts in Singapore and Macau. The company is owned by high-profile Republican donor Sheldon Adelson. The investigation centered on a Chinese-Mexican businessman. Prosecutors describe him as a high-stakes player who gambled at several major casinos, including the Venetian between 2004 and 2007. In that period, he lost more than $125 million at multiple casinos. He's wanted in Mexico on drug-trafficking charges.
- A leading contender to replace Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke holds a mix of big-company stocks and investment funds in a trust with her husband. Janet Yellen's financial disclosure report for 2012 shows that she and her husband have between $4 million and $13 million in assets, including a stamp collection valued at $15,000 to $50,000. The exact value of government officials' assets can't be determined from the financial disclosure reports because values are only required to be provided in ranges. Yellen is currently the Fed's vice chairwoman.