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2.7%  Q1 GDP    4.57%  avg. 30-year mortgage     9.5%  Unemployment

European Stocks Lift

So far, this week hasn't been as bruising as last week's historic losses. A new normal has emerged in the markets, in which they swing like a pendulum every day depending on bits of economic news and other factors, such as hedge fund sales. So far this morning, the markets in Europe seem to be following the lead of the Dow yesterday, with the DJ Stoxx index up 2.8 percent so far.

In Asia, the picture was more mixed. The Nikkei seemed to partially recover from its double-digit percentage decline of recent days, rising 2.8 percent today. The DJ Shanghai rose less than 1 percent and the Hang Seng fell 4 percent.

Oil, which fell below $70 a barrel -- a price half of what it was in July -- has risen to $71 a barrel so far today.

A couple of reports out this morning say that General Motors and Chrysler merger talks are heating up again, with the Wall Street Journal saying the deal could be agreed upon by the end of the month.

Meanwhile, on Main Street, there continue to be signs that the credit crisis is having an impact on everyday Americans. Check out Michael Fletcher's report today on how low-wage workers are feeling the squeeze and Steven Mufson's report on how businesses like Domino's Pizza are adjusting to changes in the credit markets.

--Sara Goo

By Sara Goo  |  October 17, 2008; 7:18 AM ET
Categories:  The Ticker  
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GM is burning one billion dollars a month. Chrysler would provide them with $24 billion. Chrysler is burning $750 million a month. A merger would buy the combination another year or so.

General Motors Corp. on Wednesday said its third-quarter loss ballooned to $39 billion on a massive accounting charge.
Some might call it a massive accounting fraud. It's not worth thinking about. The bailout is making the real estate situation worse. The trick isn't going to produce a treat. Oil should start falling free from the pressures of demand. The good news is that this will make the dollar purchase more and the more you get for your dollar the more secure you and your family are. The bad news is that real estate values continue to decline, leaving a wider gap between what you signed for with the mortgage and what it is worth now. You could owe $50,000 more than the property is worth and keep paying the mortgage and never catch up. If the government eats the loss, you are still on the hook for the taxes which will need to increase to pay for the losses. Right now the losses are spread out. The idea is to dump them all in Washington and sink the government in bad loans. I just don't think it will solve any problems. People are better off selling and cutting their losses and moving on. Cut your losses short and let your profits run on.

Posted by: Anonymous | October 17, 2008 8:31 AM | Report abuse

If you have any profits to run on. If not, well those are the breaks. I need to move on. I have some pressing matters to deal with. I hope it works out and I'm sure it will

Posted by: Anonymous | October 17, 2008 8:36 AM | Report abuse

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