Marketplace PM for October 22, 2004

Episode Description 

Halting Halliburton?

Get no-bid contract, pass go, collect $2.5 billion. Even though the Army's investigating you. The Army's been trying to decide what to do about billions of dollars worth of bills submitted by Halliburton for the work it's doing in Iraq. Pentagon auditors have tagged lots of those bills as "questionable" or "unsupported." John Dimsdale reports from Washington.

The week that was on Wall Street

David Johnson joins us now, to talk about the marekets of the past week and look toward what we might expect next week.

Political alignments

So the people who track such things say this presidential race is a dead heat. Well some of this year's Senate races are, too. In South Carolina, Democrat Inez Tenenbaum and Republican Congressman Jim DeMint meet tomorrow in the fifth of six debates. The candidate who wins the seat of retiring Democrat Senator Ernest Hollings could help decide which party controls the Senate. Commentator Zanny Minton Beddoes says voters may have to choose between protecting their pocketbooks and their local industries.

Election 2004 - a legal adventure

Election Day is more than a week away, but the Bush and Kerry camps are already skirmishing in Florida. Yesterday the Republican National Committee accused Democrats of violating campaign finance laws by coordinating with labor and legal groups in Florida. Democrats turned around and charged the Bush-Cheney campaign of using the same tactics. As Marketplace's Amy Scott reports, both sides are gearing up for legal battles all over the country.

Obsessing on Hollywood

There's a grudge match at the box office this weekend. In fact the movie's called "The Grudge." It's a Halloween scare up against the first Christmas offering of the year "Surviving Christmas." It may not be blockbuster season -- but that opening weekend box office number remains *the* Hollywood obsession. For their new book "Open Wide," Variety reporters Dade Hayes and Jonathan Bing analyzed the July 4th weekend of 2003 -- the weekend of Terminator 3 ... Legally Blonde 2 ... and the animated feature Sinbad. Hayes says the obsession lives on.