Stocks Fell on Euro Zone Concerns

 U.S. stocks opened sharply lower on Friday, on resurging concern about Europe as a region of Spain said it would seek the central government’s help to repay its debt. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately fell 86.24 points, or 0.67%, to 12,857.12. The S&P 500 fell 9.29 points, or 0.67%, to 1,367.22. The Nasdaq Composite fell 20.68 points, or 0.70%, to 2,945.22.

Euro-zone finance ministers on Friday formally approved an agreement with Spain that will allow the country’s government to borrow as much as 100 billion euros ($123 billion) from the euro zone’s rescue funds to recapitalize its ailing banking sector.

The Bank of England defended its role in the global interest rate-rigging scandal on Friday, publishing a host of emails that showed it put pressure on the body responsible for the contested Libor benchmark in 2008 and then signed off on proposed changes.

General Electric Co (NYS:GE) on Friday reported a 2.5 percent rise in quarterly profit from continuing operations, just beating estimates. The largest U.S. conglomerate said second-quarter net earnings attributable to common shareholders fell 15.8 percent to $3.11 billion, or 29 cents per share, from $3.69 billion, or 35 cents per share, a year earlier.

Cable programming giant Viacom and satellite broadcaster DirecTV reached a deal early Friday morning, ending a nine-day battle that left about 20 million homes without more than a dozen popular channels including MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and VH1.

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