US STOCKS-Wall St falls as no progress seen to resolve shutdown

Mon Oct 7, 2013 4:23pm EDT
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* Debt ceiling deadline draws closer with no signs of progress

* Volatility index rises to highest since June

* BlackBerry shares up on interest from strategic buyers

* Indexes off: Dow 0.9 pct, S&P 500 0.9 pct, Nasdaq 1 pct

By Ryan Vlastelica

NEW YORK, Oct 7 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks fell on Monday, extending two weeks of losses, as a lack of progress in ending the partial U.S. government shutdown or the debt-ceiling standoff kept investors nervous.

The S&P 500 ended near its lows of the session in a volatile day and dropped for its 10th time in the past 13 sessions. The CBOE Volatility index, a measure of investor anxiety, jumped 16 percent to its highest level since June. The VIX has gained for three weeks, up 48 percent over that period.

Much of the government has been closed since the start of the month, resulting in up to a million workers being furloughed. Investors are also looking ahead to the upcoming debate over the debt ceiling, which could result in a default on U.S. debt if not resolved.

In weekend comments, neither Republicans nor Democrats offered any sign of progress and both blamed the other side for the impasse. The deadline to increase the ceiling is Oct. 17.   Continued...