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

Economy Watch: April 18, 2010 - April 24, 2010

Will European bailout actually help Greece debt crisis? Maybe not.

Details of Greece's plan to wipe out its crippling debt -- with the aid of $56 billion from its reluctant European neighbors who are choosing to not get dragged down with the overspending little nation -- suggest that although...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 23, 2010; 4:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Deficit/debt , The Ticker  | Tags: Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany, Debt, European Commission, Greece, Gross domestic product, International Monetary Fund, Money, greece debt crisis  
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Two key questions moving forward on Greek debt bailout

Okay, so the ball is rolling on the Greek debt bailout. This morning, Greece -- which has been in a debt spiral in recent months -- requested a $56 billion rescue package from its reluctant neighbors and the International Monetary...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 23, 2010; 1:31 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  The Ticker  | Tags: Angela Merkel, European Central Bank, European Commission, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Greece, International Monetary Fund, Prime minister, United States, greece debt crisis, greek debt  
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New home sales in March rocket past expectations

Image by Getty Images via Daylife New homes sales in March shot up 27 percent from their record lows in the previous month, as home buyers rushed to take advantage of the government's purchase credit before it expires at the...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 23, 2010; 10:32 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (24)
Tags: Business, Commerce Department, Construction and Maintenance, Government, New Home Sales, Seasonally adjusted annual rate, United States, United States Department of Commerce  
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Existing-home sales rise amid market sell-off

March sales of existing homes surged 6.8 percent to an annual rate of 5.35 million units, beating expectations as buyers rushed to take advantage of the home-buyer credit that expires at the end of this month. Existing home sales are...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 22, 2010; 10:28 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (22)
Categories:  Data , Treasury  
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New jobless claims fall but wholesale prices rise

The number of new jobless claims filed last week dropped by 24,000, in line with forecasts, but wholesale inflation in March jumped twice as much as expected and hit its highest level since September 2008, raising fears that consumer prices...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 22, 2010; 8:49 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Data , The Ticker  | Tags: Business, Economy, Energy, Inflation, Moving average, Recession, Twitter, Unemployment  
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Obama: SEC did not discuss Goldman charges with White House beforehand

Image via WikipediaThe SEC "categorically" did not discuss its pending fraud charges against Wall Street megabank Goldman Sachs and one of its executives with the White House before they were announced, President Obama said in a CNBC interview moments ago....

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 21, 2010; 3:09 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (25)
Categories:  Congress , The Ticker , Wall Street , White House  | Tags: Barack Obama, Business, CNBC, Democratic, Goldman Sachs, John Harwood, SEC, Wall Street, financial regulatory reform  
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MSHA launches 'inspection blitz' of 57 coal mines nationwide

Image via WikipediaThe Mine Safety and Health Administration, the federal government's chief mining regulator, launched what it is calling an "inspection blitz" of 57 coal mines nationwide last weekend, focusing on ventilation and methane violations, in the wake of the...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 21, 2010; 2:51 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Tags: Coal mining, Don Blankenship, Massey Energy, Methane, Mine Safety and Health Administration, United States, Upper Big Branch, West Virginia  
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Lael Brainard confirmed at Treasury after several months' delay

Image via WikipediaThe Senate approved Lael Brainard today as undersecretary for international affairs following several months' delay. Brainard's nomination was held up by Republican concerns over allegations that she failed to pay property taxes on time. (What is it with...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 20, 2010; 4:28 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Congress , The Ticker , Treasury  | Tags: Climate change, Economic, Lael Brainard, Senate, Under Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs, United States, United States Secretary of the Treasury, White House  
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DNC, Goldman Sachs, others bidding to buy Google search term 'Goldman Sachs SEC'

Image via WikipediaThis news was broken last Friday by my former colleague Mike Allen, who now toils at Politico, but I didn't see it until today and frankly, I think it has flown under the radar. It won't for long,...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 20, 2010; 4:01 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Corporations , The Ticker , Wall Street  | Tags: AdWords, DNC, Democratic National Committee, Democratic Party, Goldman Sachs, Google, Mary Schapiro, Organizing for America, United States, Wall Street, goldman sachs sec  
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Rep. Issa to SEC: Prove to me that your Goldman Sachs charge was not politically motivated

Image via WikipediaWall Street has been wondering about the timing of the SEC's fraud charge against Goldman Sachs since it landed last Friday morning -- right as the White House and Democrats on Capitol Hill are trying to push through...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 20, 2010; 3:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Tags: Democratic, Goldman Sachs, Mary Schapiro, Politics, SEC, US Securities and Exchange Commission, United States, White House  
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The cast of characters in the Goldman case

Image via Wikipedia The SEC's fraud charge against Wall Street megabank Goldman Sachs is a complicated story with a growing cast of interesting characters. I've mentioned most of them but figured it would make sense to put them all in...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 20, 2010; 12:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Tags: Collateralized debt obligation, Goldman Sachs, Harvard Business School, Hedge fund, JPMorgan Chase, John Paulson, SEC, Wall Street  
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Stocks up at opening as Goldman beats forecasts

Stocks rose at opening this morning as first-quarter earnings at Wall Street megabank Goldman Sachs, facing an SEC fraud charge, well surpassed expectations. In the first 30 minutes of trading, the Dow is up two-tenths of 1 percent. The broader...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 20, 2010; 10:04 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  The Ticker , Wall Street  | Tags: Allegedly Unethical Firms, Business, Fraud, Goldman Sachs, Investing, Investment Banks, SEC, Wall Street  
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Paolo Pellegrini, the man with the $45 million checking account balance at the middle of the Goldman Sachs case

Image via WikipediaImagine checking on the joint checking account you share with your husband and seeing a balance of $45 million. That's what the wife of Paolo Pellegrini saw on her 2007 vacation with her husband, who has emerged as...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 19, 2010; 4:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  The Ticker , Wall Street  | Tags: Business, Collateralized debt obligation, Goldman Sachs, Hedge fund, John Paulson, Paolo Pellegrini, SEC, Wall Street, Wall Street Journal  
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Lehman Brothers, the evil Repo 105s and the danger of off-balance-sheet deals

Image via WikipediaFed Chairman Ben Bernanke plans to repeat his call for closing regulatory gaps of big financial institutions and for giving his Fed the authority to wind down troubled non-bank financial institutions in an orderly fashion in when he...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 19, 2010; 3:32 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  The Ticker , Wall Street  | Tags: Balance sheet, Board of directors, Business, Enron, Financial services, Lehman Brothers, Leverage, Repo 105  
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Goldman responds point-by-point to SEC charges

Image via Wikipedia Now that we're past the shock-and-awe phase of the SEC's bombshell fraud charge against Wall Street megabank Goldman Sachs that landed in the middle of Friday's trading, we can bring some more analysis to situation and take...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 19, 2010; 12:22 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  The Ticker , Wall Street  | Tags: Business, Collateralized debt obligation, Goldman Sachs, Hedge fund, Mortgage-backed security, SEC, Subprime lending, Wall Street  
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Conference Board's index of leading indicators rises in March

An index of leading economic indicators rose in March, good news for an economy still struggling with unemployment at 9.7 percent. According to the Conference Board, a private group that provides research to businesses, its index of leading economy indicators...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 19, 2010; 10:20 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Ticker  | Tags: Conference Board, Economic, Economic indicator, Economy, Indicators and Statistics, Official Statistics, Social Sciences, Unemployment  
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Markets mixed at open following Goldman sell-off

Stocks are mixed to open the trading week, following Friday's big sell-off caused by the SEC's fraud charge against Goldman Sachs and ahead of a big week of earnings. In the first 15 minutes of trading, the Dow is just...

By Frank Ahrens  |  April 19, 2010; 10:05 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  The Ticker  | Tags: Business, Citigroup, Fraud, Goldman Sachs, Investing, S&P 500, SEC, Twitter, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission  
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