November 9th, 2009
10:24 AM ET

Financial Dispatch: Good times, bad times

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/US/06/14/money.gas.prices/art.gas.pump.cnn.jpg caption="Gas prices are down for a fourth consecutive day"]

Gene Bloch
CNN New York Managing Editor

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times....for news on the economy.

Just when one report seems to offer a glimmer of hope, we receive a stark reminder that recovery or not, people are still hurting and conditions are tough.

Housing serves as a good example of one big problem with a few silver linings; a new report by Zillow.com shows 21% of single-family homeowners carrying a mortgage were “underwater” on their loans (or owed more than the value of their home) at the end of the third quarter. Troubling as that news is, the proportion is lower than the 23% reported in the second quarter. And home prices, while still falling in many areas of the country, are slowing in their rate of decline, and places like Fayetteville, NC and Cumberland, MD saw healthy price INCREASES in the third quarter.

Gas prices are down for a fourth consecutive day – AAA reports the average price of regular unleaded gasoline fell half a cent to $2.664 ($2.66 for graphics).

The Lundberg Survey out Sunday, which measures prices over a two-week period, reported a 3 cent increase to $2.68 a gallon, and noted that the increase is not due to rising crude prices, but from an increase in gas retailers’ margin, which bounced back a bit in the period after being squeezed in October.

Gold prices continue to surge to new records this morning, and if that run has you selling your jewelry for quick cash, be careful. You need to be sure you’re getting a good deal on your bling. Poppy Harlow has some helpful tips in today’s Breakdown.

From CNNMoney.com

The greatest real estate turnaround ever Charlotte Street in New York City's South Bronx was once the epicenter of urban blight. No longer. Now single-family homes line the strip and boats sit in driveways.

Kraft is making a hostile bid for Cadbury

Filed under: Finance • Gene Bloch
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Tim Gibson

    Yet, we have a congress that is totally out of touch with the people and with reality.

    November 9, 2009 at 10:41 am |

    This is what I expected when President Obama was elected. In his term, it will be nothing but bad times. I believe it was Obama's plan in the first place. He has a socialist agenda.

    November 9, 2009 at 10:36 am |