economic slowdown

FedEx Delivers Bad News on the U.S. Economy

On Monday, FedEx delivered some rough news to its employees: With profits down and cargo volume dropping, the company is going to tighten its belt and jettison some crewmen. Viewed in isolation, this might not seem like big news. But in context, it's a bad sign for for the U.S. economy.

Falling Gas Prices Are an Early Holiday Gift for Retailers

Gas prices have finally begun to reflect the falling price of oil, which dipped from nearly $100 a barrel in July to less than $78 now. A gallon of regular averaged $3.408 Tuesday, down from $3.662 a month ago. That's excellent news for the nation's retailers as we approach the holiday shopping season.

Gas Prices Creep Up as Oil Hits $100

WTI crude oil hit $100 a barrel briefly Thursday, a rise at partly attributed to an apparent settlement for the Greece debt crisis. The price of gasoline usually lags the price of oil, so if that pattern holds, consumers can expect higher gas prices soon -- unless certain other factors come into play.

5 Dividend Stocks You Can Rely on in a Slow Economy

Companies with strong balance sheets and high dividends will be among the few safe investment harbors if the economy continues to cool -- and given today's conditions, it's hard to imagine how the recent stock market rally could last much longer. Here are five dividend stocks that should keep paying strong returns.

Vacations at Risk for 45% of Americans

A growing inclination among Americans to change their vacation plans shows that the slowing economy is taking a toll on consumer confidence. A new survey found that 45% of workers who have taken or plan to take a vacation this summer "would reduce or cancel their plans to save money if the economy continues its volatility."

Bad News Sends Gas Prices Racing Downward

Just as fast as gas prices rose, they're now in retreat. Monday's AAA Fuel Report Gage puts the national average of regular at $3.703, down from $3.970 a month ago. Several factors could push gas below $3.50 over the next several weeks, and almost none of them were part of the economic landscape a quarter ago.

Does Investor Gloom Mean
It's Time to Buy?

Investors' spike in gloom seems out of line with broader economic developments that continue to be mixed. So stocks may be undervalued because investors are being overly conservative -- and this could be a good time to buy.

Consumer Sentiment Unexpectedly Dips

U.S. consumer sentiment unexpectedly dipped in August to 68.9. Consumers are trying to remain resilient despite clear signs of an economic slowdown, but a lack of jobs and scant income gains are beginning to take their toll.

Economic Growth Revised Lower for Second Quarter

U.S. economic growth slowed to an anemic 1.6% pace in the second quarter, due primarily to a worsening trade imbalance. The sole ray of light in the Commerce Department's report was that the downward revision was not as severe as economists had expected.

Decent Earnings Mask Weak Revenue Growth

As results roll in, earnings are beating expectations, but behind them lie lackluster revenue growth as the economy's slowdown takes hold. So despite upbeat analysts, investors should be vigilant about earnings quality and sustainability.

Tough times if you wait tables

Tighter economic conditions are giving waitstaff a double whammy. Not only are food and gas prices rising rapidly, many who work in restaurants are...