Stocks on Wall Street Open Lower

All three major indices open slightly in the red amid bank earnings, analyst downgrades and FCC talk on the satellite radio merger.
Publish date:

Updated from 7:18 a.m. EDT

Following choppy futures trading ahead of the bell, stocks in New York opened slightly lower Monday as traders received news of another executive change on Wall Street and awaited quarterly results from investment bank

Lehman Brothers




S&P 500

was down 0.6% at 1,352. The


was down 0.4% at 2,443, and the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was down 0.6% at 12,232.

Last week, the major averages had a mixed showing. The Dow gained 0.8% to end at 12,307.35, while the S&P 500 finished less than a point lower at 1360.03. The Nasdaq declined about 0.8% to 2454.50.

As the new day began, investors learned that Martin Sullivan is out as CEO of

American International Group

(AIG) - Get Report

and will be replaced by AIG's chairman, Robert Willumstad. Stephen Bollenbach, an AIG director and a former CEO of Hilton Hotels, was named lead director.

The insurance giant's board had held a special meeting this weekend to consider Sullivan's fate.

Meanwhile, quarterly results are on tap from Lehman Brothers, which last week ousted its chief financial officer and chief operating officer. The company has already announced that it will report a hefty loss, but shareholders will be looking for more details as they try to get a better read on the firm's financial health.

Also in focus were three Dow components who received analyst downgrades.


(GE) - Get Report

was cut to neutral from overweight at JPMorgan, while


(T) - Get Report



(VZ) - Get Report

were lowered to neutral from buy at UBS.

Elsewhere, the staff of the Federal Communications Commission has reportedly proposed that the agency finally grant clearance to the merger of

XM Satellite Radio



Sirius Satellite Radio

(SIRI) - Get Report

, which would bring to a close a long regulatory review of the deal.

On the commodities side, oil was up 57 cents at $135.43 a barrel, despite word that Saudi Arabia will boost production next month to about 9.7 million barrels a day. Gold was rising $7.90 to $881 an ounce.

The dollar was for the most part weaker, but it rose against the yen. Treasury prices were climbing. The 10-year note was up 10/32, yielding 4.22%, and the 30-year bond was gaining 14/32, yielding 4.76%.

This article was written by a staff member of