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NPR 2008-06-27

时间:2009-02-04 05:52来源:互联网 提供网友:jette   字体: [ ]

President Bush today eased some economic sanctions against North Korea in exchange for a North Korean declaration on details of its nuclear weapons program. NPR's Mike Shuster reports.

The president moved to rescind1 North Korea's designation as a state sponsor of terrorism imposed in the 1980s. There is a 45-day interim2 period while Congress looks at the issue before it goes into effect. The president also lifted sanctions imposed by the Trading with the Enemy Act, which date(s) back to the Korean War and restricted much trade between the US and North Korea. President Bush eased these sanctions because North Korea released a declaration that reveals crucial details of its nuclear weapons program, including an accounting3 of how much plutonium it has produced over the past twenty years. That would give the US a precise count on how many nuclear weapons North Korea may possess. Other sanctions against North Korea remain in effect, including those imposed for human rights violations4 and alleged5 currency counterfeiting6 and those adopted by the UN Security Council. Mike Shuster, NPR News.

Sales of existing homes actually rose last month, up 2%. That is a sign the housing market may be beginning to stabilize7. NPR's Chris Arnold reports.

Home sales edged up a bit as sellers cut their prices. The National Association of Realtors said prices were down 6% from a year ago. A different housing index showed prices down as much as 15% nationally. And that's brought buyers back into the market. Mark Zandi heads up Moody'sEconomy.com. He thinks the pace of sales has probably found a bottom, but: "I think there is still a mountain of inventory8 out there for sale and we are adding to it because foreclosures continue to rise. So, prices will continue to come down throughout all of the remainder of this year and well into next in most places across the country. " But with sales now leveling off, Zandi expects the market will be in a better position to start working through that inventory of unsold homes. Chris Arnold, NPR News.

And if investors9 on Wall Street were heartened at all by the slightly stronger home sales numbers last month, they didn't show it today. Financial markets took a major hit amid downgrades of some big banks and automaker General Motors on concerns about future profits. Investment bank Goldman Sachs forecast more write-downs for Citigroup and Merrill Lynch and shifted its rating on GM to "sell". David Wyss is an economist10 at Standard & Poor's and says there is a lot of pessimism11 out there. "Goldman downgraded their reports for the financial companies. People are beginning to worry that the losses will be even bigger than they thought, and that they could spread beyond just the mortgage market into other parts of consumer finance. After all, if people can't pay off their mortgage, it will make you think they can't pay the credit card bills of their car loans. " Market sell-off was exacerbated12 by a big run-up in crude oil prices which climbed more than five dollars a barrel today to settle at just below 140 dollars a barrel.

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 358 points to close at 11, 453. The NASDAQ lost 79 points. The S&P was down 38.

This is NPR.

Defense13 Secretary Robert Gates today expressed growing concerns about the rising levels of attacks by insurgent14 forces in eastern Afghanistan. Speaking at the Pentagon today, Gates said that there is a real concern it reflects infiltration15 of fighters from neighboring Pakistan. Gates' comments came in response to questions about reports that insurgent attacks in eastern Afghanistan have risen by 40% this year. The defense secretary says the ability of fighters to easily cross the border is a major factor. He says the US will raise the issue with the new government of Pakistan.

In Los Angeles, a jury has convicted a man of first-degree murder in the deaths of 11 people who were killed after the train they were on derailed. The man intentionally16 parked his jeep on the tracks during a botched suicide attempt. NPR's Carrie Kahn reports.

The jury reached its verdict on the second day of deliberations in the case of Juan Manuel Alvarez. Alvarez parked his jeep on the train tracks in the city of Glendale. The 29-year-old man said he had intended to commit suicide. He says he changed his mind but then couldn't get the jeep off the tracks. Prosecutors17 said Alvarez was set on causing a catastrophe18 in order to get attention from his estranged19 wife. It was in January of 2005 that Alvarez drove his car onto the tracks, setting off a chain reaction of collisions between commuter20 trains. Along with the 11 people who died, nearly 200 were injured in the accident. Prosecutors say they will seek the death penalty. Carrie Kahn, NPR News.

Just what residents in the States' mid-section don't need--- more rain, which has been falling in already-soggy parts of Missouri and Illinois, threatening to again  raise still-high river levels in the town of Polk City, Iowa. Five inches of rain has fallen since yesterday, with forecasters saying even one more inch could cause flash flooding.


1 rescind SCzyX     
  • They accepted his advice and rescinded the original plan.他们听从了他的劝告,撤销了原计划。
  • Trade Union leaders have demanded the government rescind the price rise.工会领导已经要求政府阻止价格上涨。
2 interim z5wxB     
  • The government is taking interim measures to help those in immediate need.政府正在采取临时措施帮助那些有立即需要的人。
  • It may turn out to be an interim technology.这可能只是个过渡技术。
3 accounting nzSzsY     
  • A job fell vacant in the accounting department.财会部出现了一个空缺。
  • There's an accounting error in this entry.这笔账目里有差错。
4 violations 403b65677d39097086593415b650ca21     
违反( violation的名词复数 ); 冒犯; 违反(行为、事例); 强奸
  • This is one of the commonest traffic violations. 这是常见的违反交通规则之例。
  • These violations of the code must cease forthwith. 这些违犯法规的行为必须立即停止。
5 alleged gzaz3i     
  • It was alleged that he had taken bribes while in office. 他被指称在任时收受贿赂。
  • alleged irregularities in the election campaign 被指称竞选运动中的不正当行为
6 counterfeiting fvDzas     
n.伪造v.仿制,造假( counterfeit的现在分词 )
  • He was sent to prison for counterfeiting five-dollar bills. 他因伪造5美元的钞票被捕入狱。 来自辞典例句
  • National bureau released securities, certificates with security anti-counterfeiting paper technical standards. 国家质量技术监督局发布了证券、证件用安全性防伪纸张技术标准。 来自互联网
7 stabilize PvuwZ     
  • They are eager to stabilize currencies.他们急于稳定货币。
  • His blood pressure tended to stabilize.他的血压趋向稳定。
8 inventory 04xx7     
  • Some stores inventory their stock once a week.有些商店每周清点存货一次。
  • We will need to call on our supplier to get more inventory.我们必须请供应商送来更多存货。
9 investors dffc64354445b947454450e472276b99     
n.投资者,出资者( investor的名词复数 )
  • a con man who bilked investors out of millions of dollars 诈取投资者几百万元的骗子
  • a cash bonanza for investors 投资者的赚钱机会
10 economist AuhzVs     
  • He cast a professional economist's eyes on the problem.他以经济学行家的眼光审视这个问题。
  • He's an economist who thinks he knows all the answers.他是个经济学家,自以为什么都懂。
11 pessimism r3XzM     
  • He displayed his usual pessimism.他流露出惯有的悲观。
  • There is the note of pessimism in his writings.他的著作带有悲观色彩。
12 exacerbated 93c37be5dc6e60a8bbd0f2eab618d2eb     
v.使恶化,使加重( exacerbate的过去式和过去分词 )
  • The symptoms may be exacerbated by certain drugs. 这些症状可能会因为某些药物而加重。
  • The drugs they gave her only exacerbated the pain. 他们给她吃的药只是加重了她的痛楚。 来自《简明英汉词典》
13 defense AxbxB     
  • The accused has the right to defense.被告人有权获得辩护。
  • The war has impacted the area with military and defense workers.战争使那个地区挤满了军队和防御工程人员。
14 insurgent V4RyP     
  • Faruk says they are threatened both by insurgent and government forces.法鲁克说,他们受到暴乱分子和政府军队的双重威胁。
  • The insurgent mob assembled at the gate of the city park.叛变的暴徒聚在市立公园的门口。
15 infiltration eb5za     
  • The police tried to prevent infiltration by drug traffickers. 警方尽力阻止毒品走私分子的潜入。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • A loss in volume will occur if infiltration takes place. 如果发生了渗润作用,水量就会减少。 来自辞典例句
16 intentionally 7qOzFn     
  • I didn't say it intentionally. 我是无心说的。
  • The local authority ruled that he had made himself intentionally homeless and was therefore not entitled to be rehoused. 当地政府裁定他是有意居无定所,因此没有资格再获得提供住房。
17 prosecutors a638e6811c029cb82f180298861e21e9     
检举人( prosecutor的名词复数 ); 告发人; 起诉人; 公诉人
  • In some places,public prosecutors are elected rather than appointed. 在有些地方,检察官是经选举而非任命产生的。 来自口语例句
  • You've been summoned to the Prosecutors' Office, 2 days later. 你在两天以后被宣到了检察官的办公室。
18 catastrophe WXHzr     
  • I owe it to you that I survived the catastrophe.亏得你我才大难不死。
  • This is a catastrophe beyond human control.这是一场人类无法控制的灾难。
19 estranged estranged     
  • He became estranged from his family after the argument.那场争吵后他便与家人疏远了。
  • The argument estranged him from his brother.争吵使他同他的兄弟之间的关系疏远了。
20 commuter ZXCyi     
  • Police cordoned off the road and diverted commuter traffic. 警察封锁了道路并分流交通。
  • She accidentally stepped on his foot on a crowded commuter train. 她在拥挤的通勤列车上不小心踩到了他的脚。
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