Later this week, we get some key data to help judge the state of the nation's housing market. There are some early signs of recovery, but home prices are still falling in many areas, as NPR's Chris Arnold reports.
CHRIS ARNOLD, BYLINE: Tomorrow, we'll get the latest word on home prices from what's called the S&P Case-Shiller index. That keeps showing price declines in many areas. Though those price drops have been leveling off, so things definitely aren't as bad as they were.
Originally published on Tue April 17, 2012 10:26 am
Food stamps have long been a favorite whipping boy of politicians looking to beat up on government spending. But the massive food-assistance program does help keep people out of poverty, according to new research.
Food stamp benefits led to a decline of 4.4 percent in poverty from 2000 to 2009, according to a new report from the USDA's Economic Research Service.
The nation's unemployment rate edged down to 8.2 percent in March from 8.3 percent in February, but only 120,000 jobs were added to private and public payrolls the Bureau of Labor Statistics said this morning in a report that was less positive about the labor market's health than economists had expected.
Prior to the news, forecasters had predicted BLS would say about 200,000 jobs were added to payrolls last month.
The monthly employment report Friday could help answer a key question about the economy: Will the recently strong job growth slow once employers finish replacing the people they fired during the depths of the recession?
Jobs at U.S. businesses increased by 209,000 in March, according to a report released Wednesday by the payroll processing firm ADP. That's in line with expectations for the monthly jobs report due out Friday.
Analysts expect Friday's official employment report from the Labor Department to show that employers added 215,000 in March and that the unemployment rate remained at 8.3 percent, according to Bloomberg News.
On the plus side, the ADP National Employment Report issued this morning estimates there were 209,000 jobs added to private employers' payrolls in March. And ADP's data often are something of a predictor for what the Bureau of Labor Statistics will have to say when it issues its monthly numbers. Those March figures are due on Friday at 8:30 a.m. ET.
Osawatomie, Kan. - President Obama gave an hour-long address in Osawatomie on Tuesday where he focused on the economy and creating a level playing-field for all Americans. KPR's Stephen Koranda was in the crowd and filed this report.
Kansas City – House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank was in Kansas City at the behest of his colleague on the committee, Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, to recognize UMB Bank and Commerce as the second and third most healthy banks in the country. This is according to ratings published by Forbes Magazine. Frank said institutions like UMB and Commerce have nothing to fear from bank reforms.
Fort Leavenworth, Kan. – The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff brought a message to military students at Fort Leavenworth they would not likely have heard less than a generation ago: that improving the global economy is a stratagem to stave off wars.
Admiral Mike Mullen told the Command and General Staff College one of his largest concerns is how to get economic engines moving so parents in both the U. S. and around the world can raise their children to a higher standard of living.
Kansas City, Mo. – Some of the nation's top economics bloggers have a breathtakingly pessimistic outlook. The findings come from the respected Kauffman Foundation on February 2, 2010.
Economic growth numbers from the last quarter of 2009 may look promising but they don't impress many of 200 economics devotees surveyed by The Kauffman group. Tim Kane is senior fellow with the foundation and engineered the first-of-its-kind study for the organization.