Merced Sun-Star
UC Merced to build new stem cell facility
A $6 million on-campus building will replace Castle center plan...DANIELLE GAINES
UC Merced's four-year-old Science and Engineering Building will be getting a face-lift as part of a new plan to bring the university's stem cell research facilities to the core campus.
The stem cell instrumentation foundry, which has yet to be built, was originally planned for Castle Air Force Base.
Almost $4 million of the $6 million research facility is coming from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine.
In Washington on Monday, President Barack Obama lifted an eight-year ban on federal funding for new embryonic stem cell research.
"We will vigorously support scientists who pursue this research," Obama said. "And we will aim for America to lead the world in the discoveries it one day may yield."
The ban on federal funding was signed by President George W. Bush in August 2001. Bush and countless others believe that embryonic stem cell research is akin to causing the death of a human life for research.
The Family Foundation of Virginia, for example, argues that "it is economically inefficient to use embryonic stem cells to treat disease." The group, like numerous other organizations and individuals, believes that life begins when an egg is fertilized.
Still, many scientists believe that embryonic stem cell research is the key to treatment for numerous health issues. The cells can be manipulated to act like other types of cells -- cardiac, for example -- that can be used to repair damaged ones in ill patients.
At UC Merced, the stem cell laboratories will include a microfabrication facility that will analyze stem cells at a single-cell level, rather than in batches as much other research is done.
The facility would create customized devices to gather information about the conditions and environments that cause stem cells to differentiate into other types of cells.
"It has a unique niche," said John Robson, vice president for operations at CIRM, about the microfabrication facility. "I don't think there is anything like it, with the same exact focus, anywhere in the state. It is really a great effort for a small university."
Robson was one of several representatives from the institute who toured the UC Merced campus Friday before the location change.
In a letter to the facilities committee, UC Merced Vice Chancellor and Provost Keith Alley said the university felt the change was for the better.
"We strongly believe that the change in project location results in a superior facility relative to the original proposal," Alley wrote.
With the new plans approved, the campus expects that construction will begin in October. The facility will be ready for research and instruction in October 2010.
"It's a very sophisticated facility," said Maria Pallavicini, dean of natural sciences. "I think it will allow us to not only fulfill the research needs of our own faculty, but it will also be a facility for the whole state of California."
The move was necessitated by inadequate facilities at the university's Castle complex.
Built in 1989, Castle Building 1200 lacked sufficient utility services, electric power backup systems and other infrastructure needed for the foundry, Alley wrote.
The university was going to remodel and update the building before identifying space at UC Merced as a less costly alternative.
Spokeswoman Katie Albertson said county and Castle representatives had no comment on the move due to lack of information.
Merced County has been focusing its efforts to redevelop the former air force base after the military ceased operations there in 1995.
UC Merced has a long-term lease with Merced County for two buildings at Castle through 2025. The buildings were leased by UC Merced before the campus opened in 2005 as the first office and instructional areas. Both buildings still host a mixture of university offices, research laboratories, warehouses and support services.
The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine was created in 2005 with the passage of the California Stem Cell Research and Cures Act, which provided $3 billion in funding for research at California universities and research institutions.
Modesto Bee
EPA considers requiring greenhouse gas reports...DINA CAPPIELLO, Associated Press Writer.
WASHINGTON -- The federal government wants to require companies for the first time to disclose how much greenhouse gases they're releasing into the atmosphere.
The Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday proposed mandatory reporting of the gases blamed for global warming from approximately 13,000 facilities nationwide. The regulation would cover companies that either release large amounts of greenhouse gases directly or produce or import fuels and chemicals that when burned emit heat-trapping gases.
Refineries, automobile manufacturers, power plants, coal mines and large manure ponds at farms would all have to report to the government emissions of at least six different gases.
Together, these facilities account for about 85-90 percent of the country's greenhouse gas emissions, the EPA said.
"Our efforts to confront climate change must be guided by the best possible information," EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson said in a statement announcing the proposed regulation.
The EPA currently requires reporting of greenhouse gases only from power plants. It also releases an annual inventory that estimates greenhouse gas emissions from broad categories such as transportation and electricity production.
The regulation proposed Tuesday would collect emissions information from individual facilities that emit 25,000 tons or more of greenhouse gases each year - or the pollution of more than 4,500 cars.
The information will lay the groundwork for any regulation of greenhouse gases. The EPA is taking steps toward controlling greenhouse gases using the Clean Air Act. Congress also is drafting a law to limit the pollution.
"These emissions reporting rules are a welcome foundation for any serious program to curb global warming pollution," said David Doniger, climate policy director for the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental group.
The EPA estimates the registry would cost companies about $127 million a year.
Companies would have to file their first reports in 2011.
Fresno Bee
Gov't forcing wildlife group to ID leak's source...PETE YOST - Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON The inspector general for the Commerce Department is trying to force a prominent environmental group to reveal who leaked the Bush administration's plans to weaken the Endangered Species Act just weeks before President Barack Obama took office.
The investigation was triggered by Sen. James Inhofe of Oklahoma, senior Republican on the Committee on Environment and Public Works. The case suggests that, under at least certain circumstances, the government will continue to pursue and identify federal employees who disclose sensitive documents about controversial U.S. policies - a common practice under the Bush administration.
The Obama administration last week put the disputed environmental plans on hold, and Obama said previously he opposed the move, which limits scientific reviews of projects that might harm endangered wildlife and plants.
But that hasn't stopped the Commerce Department's inspector general, Todd Zinser, who in a highly unusual move sent an administrative subpoena to the National Wildlife Federation. The subpoena demanded documents that would identify who leaked the draft environmental rules, which were not marked sensitive, secret or otherwise confidential or classified.
Inspectors general operate independently from the White House, although a president can remove them after notifying Congress. Zinser was appointed by President George W. Bush in December 2007.
Zinser didn't notify the White House about the subpoena, Obama spokesman Ben LaBolt said Tuesday.
"President Obama made clear last week that he is working to strengthen the Endangered Species Act," LaBolt said.
The Commerce Department's assistant inspector general for investigations, Scott Berenberg, said the case focused on the government's ability to deliberate policies privately. There have been at least three leaks investigations since January 2006 by the inspector general's office over the release of confidential or proprietary information, including two that were concluded after Zinser took office, according to the agency's case log.
"There's a potential violation of rules governing how this information is supposed to be handled," Berenberg said. "When employees are entrusted with sensitive information, we have to ensure that it is handled accordingly and that they follow the rules."
The head of the National Whistleblowers Center, Washington lawyer Steven M. Kohn, said he feared the investigation will have a chilling effect on any federal employee who discloses information. He said the government will face an uphill legal battle because the environmental group has a strong argument that the probe is an abuse of the right of association under the First Amendment.
Inhofe said in a statement that he asked for the investigation.
"It's simply the right thing to do," he said.
The Associated Press first reported the Bush administration's plans on Aug. 11. Two weeks later, Inhofe told the inspectors general at the Commerce and Interior departments that the unauthorized release of information about the proposals represented "a serious abdication of duty" by someone in the government.
"As we work to provide more accountability and increase transparency in our government, it is imperative we hold those who break the rules responsible," Inhofe said in a statement to the AP.
The Commerce Department is involved in the case because its offices include several dealing with environmental issues under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The other federal agency affected by the changes to the Endangered Species Act was the Interior Department, which runs the Fish and Wildlife Service.
Obama's new Interior secretary, Ken Salazar, told the AP he was unaware of the leaks investigation. Salazar said he is a strong proponent of greater openness during the rule-making process as "the best way to deal with the American public." Salazar predicted greater transparency is something the public "will see a lot more of in this administration."
The executive director of wildlife conservation and global warming at the National Wildlife Federation, John Kostyack, said the group will go to court in an effort to get the subpoena quashed. Kostyack acknowledged he was a recipient of the leaked draft rules.
The new Bush regulation enables federal agencies to decide for themselves whether highways, dams, mines and other construction projects might harm endangered animals and plants.
Kostyack described the person who sent the draft rules to him as a whistle-blower. "People within the agency got angry because they lost control of the story," he said, "and now we're being asked to empty our files."
Steelhead trout getting migration help...The Associated Press
SATICOY, Calif. The United Water Conservation District is changing the flow from a Ventura County diversion dam to give migrating steelhead trout a better chance at getting upstream.
The 30-foot Vern Freeman Diversion dam in Saticoy prevented the few hundred remaining steelhead from migrating up the Ventura River to spawn. An ineffective fish ladder was installed in 1991.
The National Marine Fisheries Service ruled last year that the dam jeopardized the federally protected fish and CalTrout environmentalists sued to force United Water to comply with agency recommendations, including stream flow changes and a new fish passage.
United Water agreed to the recommended water-flow changes and CalTrout agreed Monday to withdraw its lawsuit during the migration season ending May 31.
Stockton Record
S.J. home sales fall for second straight month
But surge of homes expected to hit the market next month...Bruce Spence
Existing home sales in San Joaquin County have fallen for the second consecutive month.
Real estate brokers say that's because the number of new foreclosure homes on the market has continued to be slow temporarily due to moratoriums and a state law that requires lenders to at least try to contact homeowners about possibly modifying mortgage payments.
A total of 819 existing homes sold countywide in February, down from 1,001 in January, according to figures from the latest Grupe Real Estate-Trendgraphix monthly sales report, based on Multiple Listing Service data.
Jerry Abbott, president and co-owner of Grupe Real Estate in Stockton, said sales have dropped because there just aren't enough good foreclosure properties on the market right now to meet demand.
"The good stuff that's reasonably priced sells instantly," he said.
Foreclosures are still selling well, but there just aren't many of the good-quality ones left, said Art Godi of Art Godi Realtors in Stockton.
"The cream of the (foreclosures) is thinning out," he said.
Abbott said there are more short-sale properties on the market these days, but they aren't selling consistently, with banks often deciding to go ahead and foreclose a property while a short sale is still in the works.
Godi said short sales aren't moving like foreclosures because of long time lags that commonly mean a would-be buyer has to wait as long as five weeks for an answer from the bank about whether an offer has been accepted.
Abbott said he expects a sales surge next month, though. He said a local manager for Countrywide told him to expect a big swell of backlogged foreclosure properties to hit the market in April.
Ben Balsbaugh, residential sales manager for PMZ Real Estate in Stockton, said the market is waiting on more foreclosure properties.
"It seems as though a lot of banks have been holding off for a couple of reasons," he said. "They either think if they wait long enough they will get bailed out also or that the government is going to create a plan to help them."
He said his agents have been doing many price opinions for banks on properties, which is a sign that there are a lot of new properties nearing the market.
San Francisco Chronicle
Salmon season may shut down again this year...Peter Fimrite
You know the fish aren't jumpin' when the very people who make their living reeling in chinook salmon are proposing a ban on ocean fishing for a second straight year.
That is exactly what happened Monday at the annual Pacific Fishery Management Council meetings in Seattle, where the gory details of the catastrophic decline of California's salmon has become woefully apparent.
Fishing-industry representatives on a council advisory panel looked at the dismal state of the fall run of Sacramento River salmon and proposed closing the 2009 ocean salmon fishing season, except, perhaps, for a bit of recreational fishing near the Oregon border.
"It is pretty simple in California," said Peter Dygert, a fishery biologist for the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration's fisheries service. "Both the recreational and commercial trollers on the advisory panel have proposed no fishing."
The management council, a 14-member federal panel that manages the Pacific Coast fishery, is expected to come up with three options for ocean fishing after a week of testimony and the digestion of mounds of documents and studies.
There isn't much mystery about what the council will propose, given that the folks most likely to lobby for more fishing are proposing the elimination of the season. The only thing to decide, really, is whether to allow recreational fishing on certain dates in the summer from the Oregon border south to a spot near the mouth of the Klamath River, which had a slightly better salmon return than the Central Valley river system.
The current proposals would allow sportfishing over the July 4 weekend and from Aug. 15 to Sept. 7. An alternate plan would allow it only from Aug. 29 to Sept. 7.
Biologists estimated only 66,000 adult salmon returned to spawn last fall in the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers, based on a count of egg nests in the river bed. It was the lowest return on record. The collapse caused regulators to ban ocean salmon fishing in California and most of Oregon last year.
The collapse led to an emergency declaration and appropriation of federal disaster assistance to keep fishing businesses alive.
The dismal spawning numbers are expected to continue this year. Fisheries biologists are projecting that the fall run of chinook in the system this year will be a little bit higher than last year. Still, the numbers will barely reach the council's spawning goals even if there is no fishing, according to the projections.
Both the Klamath and Sacramento rivers have suffered recently from extremely low returns. Declines have also been seen in the Columbia-Snake River System over the past several years.
Last year, more than 2,200 fishermen and fishing-related business workers lost their jobs. Fishing communities and fishing-related businesses lost more than
$250 million, according to some estimates. Indirect economic impacts were even higher, according to fishing industry representatives.
The collapse in California is especially troubling because the Central Valley fall run of chinook has for many years been the backbone of the West Coast fishing industry. Big salmon from the Sacramento River have been reeled in as far north as Alaska, according to biologists.
The council is considering allowing fishing of only hatchery fish - identifiable because their fleshy adipose fins are removed - off the Oregon coast. Meanwhile, more than 75 commercial and recreational fishing associations and conservation organizations signed a letter Monday urging President Obama to create a new position of salmon director to help restore the West Coast salmon populations, protect fishing jobs and rebuild the salmon economy.
A final decision on the ban and the hatchery fishing is expected in early April.
Los Angeles Times
FBI investigates firebombing of UCLA researcher's car
No one was injured in last week's incident at home of faculty member using animals to study schizophrenia and drug addiction...Julie Cart
The FBI is looking into the firebombing of a vehicle owned by a UCLA neuroscientist who was targeted by an anti-animal research group for using primates in his study of psychiatric disorders.
The March 7 incident involving a homemade incendiary device took place outside the faculty member's home and caused no injuries, according to FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller. The UCLA professor, who researches treatments for schizophrenia, drug addiction and other disorders, was not identified.
The firebombing is one in a series of aggressive acts aimed at university researchers who use animals in medical studies, UCLA spokesman Phil Hampton said. In other cases, firebombs have been left on doorsteps and in homes, vehicles have been vandalized and researchers have received threatening phone calls and e-mails.
The harassment led to a court order last year that has since been converted into a preliminary injunction banning the distribution of researchers' personal information on websites and fliers.
Eimiller said the investigation of Saturday's incident will be conducted by a Joint Terrorism Task Force that includes the FBI, the LAPD, the Los Angeles Fire Department, the UCLA Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
The Animal Liberation Front posted a message on its website Monday from a group that claimed responsibility for the firebombing.
UCLA is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone involved in the incident.
New York Times
Obama Puts His Own Spin on Mix of Science With Politics...SHERYL GAY STOLBERG
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/10/us/politics/10obama.html?_r=1&sq=endangered species&st=cse&scp=4&pagewanted=print
WASHINGTON — President Obama’s directive on Monday to “guarantee scientific integrity” in federal policy making could have a far-reaching impact, affecting issues as varied as climate change, national security, protection of endangered species and children’s health.
But it will not divorce science from politics, or strip ideology from presidential decisions.
Mr. Obama delighted many scientists and patients by formally announcing that he was overturning the Bush administration’s limits on embryonic stem cell research. But the president also went one step further, issuing a memorandum that sets forth broad parameters for how his administration would choose expert advisers and use scientific data.
The document orders Mr. Obama’s top science adviser to help draft guidelines that will apply to every federal agency. Agencies will be expected to pick science advisers based on expertise, not political ideology, the memorandum said, and will offer whistle-blower protections to employees who expose the misuse or suppression of scientific information.
The idea, the president said in remarks before an audience of lawmakers, scientists, patients advocates and patients in the East Room, is to ensure that “we make scientific decisions based on facts, not ideology”: a line that drew more applause than any other. Irv Weissman, who directs an institute at Stanford University devoted to studying stem cells, called the declaration “of even greater importance” than the stem cell announcement itself.
It was also another in a long string of rebukes by Mr. Obama toward his predecessor, President George W. Bush. Mr. Bush was often accused of trying to shade or even suppress the findings of government scientists on climate change, sex education, contraceptives and other issues, as well as stem cells. But Mr. Obama’s announcement does not elevate science to some new and exalted place in his administration.
“Scientists should have no illusions about whether they make policy — they don’t,” said Harold Varmus, president of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and co-chairman of a panel that advises Mr. Obama on science matters.
The directive, Dr. Varmus said, was simply intended “to provide the best available scientific information” to those who make policy decisions.
Scientists said they were thrilled by the announcement, as were advocates for patients, including Nancy Reagan, the former first lady who has made embryonic stem cell research a personal cause.
Mr. Obama said in his Inaugural Address that he intended to “restore science to its rightful place,” and researchers said he had already made good on that promise by naming Nobel laureates like Dr. Varmus and Steven Chu, the energy secretary, to advise him.
“We’re not dumb — we know that policy is made on the basis of facts and values,” said Alan I. Lesher, chief executive of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a former director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse under President Bill Clinton and, briefly, Mr. Bush.
But by asserting “the centrality of science to every issue of modern life,” Dr. Lesher said, Mr. Obama is suggesting that science rather than ideology will be the foundation for his decision making. “What you are seeing now is both a response to the last eight years, and a genuine reaction to President Obama’s enthusiasm for science,” he said.
During the Bush years, Congressional Democrats and scientists themselves issued report after report asserting that the White House had distorted or suppressed scientific information: including efforts to strip information about condoms from a government Web site and the editing of air quality reports issued by the Environmental Protection Agency.
The Union of Concerned Scientists, for example, maintains an “A to Z” list on its Web site of “case studies” in what it calls the politicization of science under Mr. Bush, like his decision to devote federal money to programs promoting abstinence education despite studies showing that such programs have limited effectiveness.
The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform spent 16 months examining the Bush administration’s use of scientific data on climate change; it issued a lengthy report in 2007 documenting “a systematic White House effort to censor climate scientists by controlling their access to the press and editing testimony to Congress.” Representative Henry A. Waxman, Democrat of California, who led the committee at the time, said Monday that Mr. Bush had “exhibited a willingness to undermine science in order to further a conservative agenda.”
But Mr. Bush’s defenders see Mr. Obama as just imposing an ideology of his own. They say Mr. Bush did not ignore scientific facts; rather, he took the counsel of scientists and used it to make a policy determination that reflected his values, just as Mr. Obama is doing in lifting Mr. Bush’s restrictions on stem cell research.
“Those who suggest that the Bush administration did not rigorously apply science are themselves ignoring the facts,” said Karl Rove, the former president’s political strategist.
Mr. Rove called Mr. Obama’s declaration on restoring scientific integrity “simply hyperbole and hyperventilation,” and he disputed Mr. Waxman’s accusation on climate change, saying the Bush White House “put more money into global climate research than any administration in history, by a significant factor.”
In the end, said Ed Gillespie, the former counselor to Mr. Bush, all administrations use science in service of a political agenda.
“Administrations come into office with a point of view,” Mr. Gillespie said. “The people in office tend to highlight those facts that support their point of view — not because they’re quashing dissent or not being scientific, but because this is what helps inform their thinking. A lot of scientific data can’t be refuted, but a lot of science is subjective. And even irrefutable science can be value-laden.”
Politics-Free Science?...John Tierney
President Obama today today announced the signing of a memorandum instructing the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to “develop a strategy for restoring scientific integrity to government decision-making.” He promised to “base our public policies on the soundest science” and to “appoint scientific advisors based on their credentials and experience, not their politics or ideology.”
Well, that sounds very nice, but what does it mean? Let me know what you think. You can read the White House’s summary of the new science policy here If you’ve read my previous column and posts on the president’s new scientific advisers, you can guess that I’m skeptical of how open this administration — or any administration — really is to science that doesn’t conform to its agenda. Conservatives’ spinning of science has been widely criticized, but see, for instance, Ronald Bailey’s account in Reason of how liberal politics trumped scientific findings about silicone breast implants and second-hand smoke.
Perhaps, though, I’m being too cynical. I was interested to see that this new memorandum instructs agency administrators to “have appropriate rules and procedures to ensure the integrity of the scientific process within the agency, including whistleblower protection.” Do you suppose this protection will inspire any government scientists to question Mr. Obama’s claim that global warming is causing “storms that are growing stronger with each passing hurricane season”? How many government economists will speak about the theoretical and practical advantages of a carbon tax over the cap-and-trade system being promoted by the administration? How many federal scientists discuss the environmental problems blamed on the ethanol subsidies favored by Mr. Obama?
If there are whistleblowers feeling newly empowered, please feel free to post comments here.
Washington Post
Citi's profit view, uptick talk drive big rally...Chuck Mikolajczak, Reuters
NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks posted their best day in four months on Tuesday after Citigroup said it was profitable in the first two months of 2009.
Major indexes jumped off 12-year lows in heavy trading after a key lawmaker said he expected the reinstatement of a rule that makes it harder to bet that a stock will fall.
Financials led the huge rally, rising 16 percent after Citigroup Inc <C.N>Chief Executive Vikram Pandit also stated in a memo to staff of what was once the largest U.S. bank that he was confident about its capital strength.
Adding to the positive tone, U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, chairman of the U.S. House Financial Services Committee, said he is hopeful the Securities and Exchange Commission will reimpose the "uptick" rule in about a month.
The rule slows the pace of short selling, or bets that a stock will fall, and could help calm volatile markets.
"There's been significant short covering in the financials today as a result of comments from Citi's chairman lending a stronger tone to the financials overall," said Michael James, senior trader at regional investment bank Wedbush Morgan in Los Angeles.
"The uptick rule possibly going back into effect would also be a significant positive for the financials. It would make it harder to short stocks," he added.
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> gained 379.44 points, or 5.80 percent, to 6,926.49. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> climbed 43.07 points, or 6.37 percent, to 719.60. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> jumped 89.64 points, or 7.07 percent, to 1,358.28.
This was the Dow's largest percentage gain since November 21, 2008, and its fifth-biggest percentage increase since December 31, 2007.
According to Reuters data, the benchmark S&P 500 went into Tuesday's session at its most oversold condition in five months, when measured by its 50-day relative strength index.
Rep. Frank also echoed earlier comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, who called for "improvements" in mark-to-market regulations, rather than suspending them. Many have attributed these accounting rules for increasing losses and writedowns on bank balance sheets.
The last time the S&P rose this much was after the U.S. government decided to rescue Citigroup for the first time in late November, when it agreed to pump $20 billion of new capital into the bank to avert a collapse that could have crippled the world's financial system.
Shares of Citigroup, in which the government more recently took a large common equity stake to help shore it up, jumped 38.1 percent to $1.45. Citi's stock has fallen about 78 percent year to date.
Other bank shares rallied, with Bank of America <BAC.N> up nearly 28 percent at $4.79, and Wells Fargo &lt;WFC.N> up 18.5 percent at $11.81. An S&P index of financial stocks <.GSPF> popped up 15.6 percent.
JPMorgan <JPM.N> was the Dow's top performer with nearly a 23 percent jump to $19.50. All 30 Dow components were in positive territory.
The advance by financial shares marks a turnaround in investor sentiment after the sector has been hammered recently as banks' credit losses swelled.
After the closing bell, U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said in an interview with Public Broadcasting's Charlie Rose that the country was facing a deepening recession, but policy action would restore growth.
Other standouts included technology shares, with a jump in bellwethers like Apple Inc <AAPL.O> halting a three-day sell-off in the sector. The iPhone maker's stock, up 6.6 percent at $88.63, provided the biggest boost to the Nasdaq 100 <.NDX>. Microsoft <MSFT.O> gained 8.8 percent to $16.48 while Qualcomm <QCOM.O> added 7.2 percent to $35.36.
Highlighting the broad-based rally, the Dow Jones Home Construction index <.DJUSHB> climbed 15 percent, led by Pulte Homes <PHM.N> and D.R. Horton Inc <DHI.N>.
Trading was heavy on the New York Stock Exchange, with about 2.19 billion shares changing hands, above last year's estimated daily average of 1.49 billion, while on Nasdaq, about 2.39 billion shares traded, above last year's daily average of 2.28 billion.
Volume on the NYSE was the second largest for the year.
Advancing stocks outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a ratio of about 14 to 1, while on the Nasdaq, about five stocks rose for every one that fell.