September 16th, 2009
01:24 PM ET

Financial Dispatch: More Green Shoots

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/09/16/gas.station.jpg]

Gene Bloch
Managing Editor
CNN New York

Those “green shoots” keep sprouting up. Industrial production – a measure of activity at the country’s factories, mines and utilities – rose 0.8% in August, a bigger than expected increase, and the second straight gain. The news is read by economists as consistent with the early stages of a recovery.

Inflation meanwhile is not yet a threat, the Consumer Price Index rose 0.4% in August, slightly more than expected, but the increase was driven by a run-up in gas prices. If you take energy and food out of the equation, the so-called “core” CPI rose a scant 0.1%.

Last month’s gasoline hike meanwhile continues to let up, AAA reports a gallon of regular unleaded fell in price for the fifth straight day, falling 7-tenths of a cent to $2.563 ($2.56 for graphics purposes).

As we continue to mark the one-year anniversary of the collapse of Lehman Brothers, we look at some of the younger workers from Lehman and Merrill Lynch who lost their jobs and what they’re doing now. One of the people Christine Romans profiled for American Morning goes on tour with a popular rock band.

As the Senate Finance Committee releases its a much-awaited health care reform bill, a new survey is providing fresh ammunition to those fighting for reform.

The Kaiser Family Foundation says the annual cost of employer-sponsored family health insurance coverage has risen 5% this year, to $13,375— even though inflation fell. As coverage gets more expensive for companies, employers are shifting more of the burden to their workers, in the form of higher premiums, deductibles, and co-pays.If health care costs continue to grow at an average annual rate of 8.7% - which they did over the past 10 years - Kaiser estimates the annual premium cost for employer-based family coverage will top $30,000 by 2019.

On CNNMoney today:

* Where are the subprime perp walks? Three years after the housing bubble popped, prosecutors have yet to bring a major case tied to the subprime fiasco. What gives?


* Fortune Most Powerful Women conference – Day 2. Newsmakers include Condi Rice, Meg Whitman and Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz

* The SEC gets neutered again. The rejection of a settlement with BofA over Merrill bonuses leaves the embattled agency exposed to m ore criticism. But BofA is hardly in the clear either.


* You can't handle the truth about stocks http://money.cnn.com/2009/09/16/retirement/Bodie_stock_allocation.moneymag/index.htm

* 4 steps to a worry-free retirement


Filed under: Economy • Finance • Health Care • stocks
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Mari

    To Jersey Ray, I agree with you. And I am an Obama supporter.

    September 16, 2009 at 6:33 pm |
  2. Jersey Ray

    Surely you can find a better representative for a Conservative point of view on your program than the racial bigot Mark Williams.

    September 16, 2009 at 3:23 pm |