From a Reuters story on the wires this afternoon:
U.S. stocks trimmed earlier losses on Thursday after a Homeland Security official said the United States has no plans to adjust the terror alert level at this time.
An earlier rumor, sparked by comments from U.S. intelligence chief John Negroponte, who said al Qaeda was still plotting attacks on the United States, had pushed stocks down.
I can understand why the markets might be nervous, given the recent Bin Laden and al-Zawahiri tapes, and the common belief (which I’ve never seen proved or disproved) that tapes are used as “go” signals for operatives to execute planned attacks. But the current leadership of DHS is not enamored with the threat alert system, and I doubt that they would raise the alert level unless they had specific and credible information about a plot.