Report Summary

News about the crash of a United Airlines DC-10 in Iowa, and the American hostages in the Mideast, were the only stories followed very closely by large percentages of Americans in early August. The Sioux City air disaster and the murder of Marine Lt. Col. Higgins and related Mideast events, were closely followed by about half the public (53% and 49%, respectively). The third most closely followed story attracted much less attention — the S&L bailout was followed very closely by only 26%. While this is a far lower level of attention than was paid to the two top stories of the month, it is a surprisingly large number considering the nature of the story — economic policy news out of Washington.