Wall St. closes out on 2008, year of record losses (AP)

Erin Goldrick, 10, does her homework at their home in Hampton Bays, New York in this December 16, 2008 photo. Cynthia Goldrick is fighting to save her home in a year in which her daughter Erin has gone in and out of the hospital for brain surgery, her mother developed Stage 4 lung cancer and her father was moved into a home for the elderly. This one family's story is more than just a metaphor for the perfect storm that has afflicted the world economy. It is intricately linked, illustrating how the money trail from one failed mortgage runs through frozen credit markets, the transformation of Wall Street and recession all hitting at the same time. (Shannon Stapleton/Files/Reuters)AP – Investors are preparing to close out the last three trading days of 2008, a year in which Wall Street has logged its worst performance since Herbert Hoover was president.

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