AP Business WriterNEW YORK (AP) -- Wall Street shut down Tuesday after two separate planes crashed into the World Trade Center.
Much of the downtown district, including the nearby Financial Center. It was also difficult to make phone calls to the downtown business district and throughout Manhattan.
Trading was suspended at the New York Stock Exchange, and officials were deciding whether to shut for the entire day. The Nasdaq Stock Market said it was still considering an 11:30 a.m opening, but no final decision had been made.
Other markets did close: the American Stock Exchange and the New York Mercantile Exchange.
The nearby World Financial Center, which houses the NYMEX, was also evacuated.
An apparent similar attack on the Pentagon in Washington and reports of the collapse of one of the World Trade Center skyscrapers in Washington added to the paralysis and terror already engulfing the financial district.
"The two explosions were incredible and at the point of explosions all you could see outside were personal belongings and office supplies raining outside," said Bob Rendine, an American Stock Exchange spokesman, whose office is down the block from the NYSE. "We're staying here. We think it's safer to stay inside then go outside at this point."
Business and trading in other parts of the country also were affected. The Chicago Board of Trade also suspended all trading effective, 10:15 a.m.
Around the country and world, the investment community was focused on the fate of people working in the buildings affected by the apparent terrorist attacks.
"I'm just worried about people who are there," said Robert Harrington, head of listed block trading at UBS Warburg's office in Connecticut.