June 14, 2014 |
Americans are grappling with dueling realities: Their portfolios have mostly recovered from the painful financial crisis, and might even show some tasty profits. But the U.S. economy seems fragile, and the labor participation rate is lousy. Most assume that when the stock market does well, the economy is booming. But that is not the case these days. "When companies are doing well, stock prices do well, so the economy must steam full ahead," says Esme Faerber, professor of business at Rosemont College.
October 5, 2013 |
Who says congressional Republicans and Democrats can't work together in harmony with President Obama? Forget about the little stuff like running the federal government. Congress passed and Obama signed on Wednesday the Helium Stewardship Act of 2013. The world is safe for balloons, if not democracy. Air Products & Chemicals Inc. of Allentown applauded the cooperation, with Walter Nelson, director of helium sourcing, saying in a company statement, "We are just pleased that the legislation's passing prevented a difficult supply situation from getting any worse.
June 15, 2013 |
I freely admit that I'm a worrywart. While most people are concerned when the stock market plunges, I expend an equal amount of hand-wringing energy when it defies gravity for too long. It might be the result of hearing one too many times the oft-repeated caution that "if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. " So I am probably one of the few people who was happy this week to see the Dow Jones industrial average experience its first three-day losing streak in 2013.
June 14, 2013 |
NEW YORK - Good news about hiring and spending at retail businesses helped send the U.S. stock market sharply higher Thursday. For investors, the pair of government reports offered more encouragement that the U.S. economic recovery will continue even as Europe and Japan struggle. The Standard & Poor's 500 index soared 23.84 points, or 1.5 percent, to 1,636.36. The gains were broad. All 10 industry groups within the S&P 500 rose, led by retailers and other consumer-discretionary companies.
June 8, 2013 |
NEW YORK - A Thursday afternoon rally on Wall Street gave the stock market a better day. The Standard & Poor's 500 index was down 10 points and falling at 12:30 p.m. as traders reacted to a slump in overseas markets. It seemed headed for another sell-off like Wednesday's 22-point drop. But the index reversed course and rose the rest of the day. It closed with a gain of 13.66 points, or 0.9 percent, at 1622.56. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 80.03 points, or 0.5 percent, to 15,040.62.
February 27, 2013 |
NEW YORK - Stocks had their worst drop in more than three months as the prospect of political paralysis in Italy raised the specter of Europe's debt crisis flaring up again. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 216.40 points, or 1.6 percent, to 13,784.17, its biggest drop since Nov. 7. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 27.75 points, or 1.8 percent, to 1,487.85, dropping below 1,500 for the first time in three weeks. The Nasdaq composite dropped 45.57 points, or 1.4 percent, to 3,116.25.
January 20, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Federal Reserve officials in 2007 underestimated the scope of the approaching financial crisis and how it would tip the U.S. economy into the worst recession since the Great Depression, transcripts of the Fed's policy meetings that year show. The meetings were held as the country was on the brink of the worst financial crisis since the 1930s. As the year went on, Fed officials shifted their focus away from the risk of inflation as they slowly began to recognize the severity of the crisis.
December 28, 2012 |
Just because President Obama and Congress haven't cut a deal to avoid tax hikes and spending cuts that will threaten a new recession, is that any reason for investors to freak out and sell stocks, bonds, and retirement funds? Investment advisers - including some notable ones in the Philadelphia region - trying to preserve healthy 2012 gains in the markets after a decade of pathetic results, are pushing clients to stay calm about the mess in Washington. While the financial markets will be nervous until there is a deal, "the underlying economic data continues to offer encouraging signs," wrote a hopeful Mark Luschini, chief investment strategist at Philadelphia-based brokerage Janney Montgomery Scott, in a note to clients Wednesday.
November 12, 2012 |
FRANKFURT, Germany - The worst of Europe's financial crisis appears to be over. European leaders have taken steps to ease the panic that has plagued the region for three turbulent years. Financial markets are no longer in a state of emergency over Europe's high government debts and weak banks. And this gives politicians from the 17 countries that use the euro breathing room to fix their remaining problems. Threats remain in Greece and Spain, and Europe's economy is forecast to get worse before it gets better.
November 11, 2012 |
Massive power outages. Mass transit disruption. Financial markets closed. Superstorm Sandy? Yes. But also the possible result of a cyberattack, to which we remain vulnerable. Before the storm, it was difficult to envision the havoc that could be wreaked by computer shenanigans. But now that risk should be readily apparent to us all. What remains to be seen is whether Sandy serves as a wake-up call in the face of this ongoing risk - one that lasts long after power has been restored, water has receded, and homes are rebuilt.