recession

Lean Bonus Season Ahead for Wall Street Bankers

With unemployment still high, late mortgage payments rising, and the number of Americans in poverty at record levels, it seems that Main Street is headed for a hard, cold holiday season. But, somewhat surprisingly, so too are the fat cats of Wall Street -- relatively speaking.

Lehman Brothers' First Share Sells for $33,000

While creditors continue to fight over the nearly valueless crumbs of Lehman Brothers, one tiny piece of the investment bank just demonstrated close to a 66,000% return on investment -- as a collectors item: A 50-cent share in the bank was sold at auction Saturday for 24,000 euros -- about $33,000.

Jobless and Eager to Shop on Black Friday ... for You

For many of the millions of Americans still out of work, shopping on Black Friday has become a luxury they can no longer afford. But some entrepreneurial consumers are refusing to be left with empty bags. They're going shopping for those doorbusters -- but for you, and for a fee.

Average Student Debt Hits Record High in 2010: $25,250

A report released on Thursday by the Institute for College Access & Success's Project on Student Debt shows that members of the class of 2010 who took out loans to finance their educations owed an average of $25,250 in student debt at graduation -- a 5% increase from the year before.

Holiday Shopping: Self-Gifting Is On the Rise

Recession-scarred shoppers are tired of cutting back, and they're ready to give in to their pent up spending impulses, experts say. So after a few years of austerity, this holiday season, many people are going to be splurging a bit more on presents for themselves.

Fewer Americans Can Afford the Basics

Fewer and fewer Americans can afford the basics that have been part of what the middle class has been able to expect for decades. That's not just bad for them -- falling demand for some services will undermine their ability to exist at all %u2014 at least at current levels.

Why Jewelry Sales Will Shine This Holiday Season

Are diamonds the ultimate recession buy? Recent data seems to suggest that our current economic turbulence is sending some Americans to the jewelers. Fine jewelry sales are expected to sparkle this holiday season, outshining much of the rest of the retail sector.

For Workers Laid Off in Recessions, Big Pay Gaps Persist

No matter when a person gets laid off, it can have long-lasting financial consequences -- among them, a wage gap that persists for years. But a new study reveals that men who are part of a mass layoff during a recession lose 72% more over their lifetimes than men who lose jobs in during periods of economic growth.

Why More People May Sell Their Gold for Cash

More people have been selling their gold jewelry in the past year, many to cover expenses, others to just to take advantage of record high prices. Prices have dipped a bit from their recent highs, but expect more people to sell in the months ahead, and expect the prices to rise again.

The Mall-ification of the American Church

A third of America's indoor malls are currently in financial distress as retailers vacate for trendier shopping areas. But a surprising new breed of tenant is stepping in to fill that vacant retail space: churches.

3 Signs We're Heading for a Recession

Zero jobs were created in August. Does that, by itself, augur another recession? Not necessarily -- but add the state of consumer confidence, and top it off with Wall Street skittishness, and all signs point to trouble ahead. Government economists, however, are predicting growth. Here's why they may be wrong.

GM On Track to Be August's Car Sales Winner

GM is expected to show a sales increase of 15.3% from a year ago when it posts August numbers later this week, according to auto industry research firm Edmunds. That would be an improvement of 30,000 cars and light trucks and would eclipse the unit gains of its smaller rivals.

Other Countries That Should Be Downgraded

As for downgrades, is the worst over for America? Standard & Poor's managing director John Chambers said just Sunday that another U.S. downgrade can't necessarily be ruled out. 24/7 Wall St. says the U.S. isn't the only country that should put on the watch list.

How to Survive the Stock Market's Wild Ride

The stock-market roller coaster of the last couple of weeks -- culminating with Thursday's 500-point plunge on the Dow -- has been enough to make even the most stoic investors sweat. Experts offer opinions on how you can turn uncertainty into opportunity.

'Wall Street Wives' Gets Down to Business with Auditions

Devon Fleming's casting call for her planned reality TV series, "Wall Street Wives," attracted the media attention that producers relish, and hundreds of women responded. She allowed The Price of Fame to attend a recent audition, where we got a glimpse of the sort of drama the show might deliver.

Great Recession Created a Historic Racial Wealth Gap

The twin demons of the housing market crash and the Great Recession have created historic wealth gaps among racial groups in America: The median wealth of white households is 20 times that of black households, and 18 times that of Hispanic households. The main culprit in minority wealth loss? The housing bust.

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.

'Divorce Starts': A Leading Indicator for Home Sales?

While not everyone whose marriage ends rushes out to break ground on a new home, some real estate agents say divorcing spouses make up at least a third of their clients. With the economy impacting divorce trends and marital splits pushing spending trends, should economists be watching divorce rates when they chart the economic outlook?

Tattoos: An Oddly Recession-Proof Industry

The weak economy is affecting most businesses, but not tattoo parlors. Even in bad times, people will splurge on body art. And for those who later elect to have them removed, it's often a tattoo business that lasers away the ink. DailyFinance's Loren Berlin visited Tattoo Lou's to check out the state of this colorful industry.

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.

The Financial Landscape: Is Italy the Next Greece?

As the eurozone sovereign debt crisis continues, focus is shifting to Italy as the next potential victim. But for worries closer to home, consider this: $37 billion in U.S. government benefits designed to help people through the downturn will expire by the end of 2011, leaving a hole twice that size in the economy.

Voodoo Economics: Mystical Methods to Attract Money

With millions of Americans near the end of their financial ropes, some may wonder if it's time to try some unconventional methods for turning their fortunes around. Magic. Feng Shui. Or even good old-fashioned prayer. Without judgment or endorsement, we explored some of the occult options.

The Texas Surge: Is America Headed South?

For more than two centuries, the Census Bureau has plotted America's population center, mapping a steady progression of westward and southward growth. With a boom in Texas and busts on the coasts sending the center South, what does the new center say about the nation's future?

Job Concerns Soar Among Employed, Unemployed

Employee concerns about layoffs have moved sharply higher according to a new survey by online jobs company Glassdoor. The percentage of those who are worried rose sharply to 22% in the second quarter, the highest that statistic has been since the third quarter of 2009, in the heart of the recession.

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."

Made in America Leaders That Make a Real Difference

How many problems with the U.S. economy would be solved if more people bought American, and if more companies would were willing to help them do so by manufacturing here? Joel Joseph of the Made in the USA Foundation thinks it would help plenty, and he's honoring companies that have taken the lead.

Gas Prices: Down Lately, But Up 30% From 2010

Most of the media coverage about gas prices lately is focused on the fact that they've fallen from an average of $3.98 to $3.58 in about two months. What's rarely mentioned is that the cost per gallon is still 30% higher than it was this time last year, when a gallon cost $2.75.

How to Prep for a (Possible) Double-Dip Recession

Is America headed for the Great Recession, part two? The talking heads are still in heated debate on the issue. But for those of us who aren't pundits, there's a more important question: What should we be doing now, just in case economic lightning does strike twice?

Could This Be the Cure for Walmart's Dollar Store Blues?

Since the Great Recession began, Walmart has been facing heavy competition from dollar stores. In response, it recently opened the first of many Walmart Express stores. Trefis explores what effect these new smaller stores will have on the future value of the the world's largest retailer.

Poll: Nearly Half of Americans Fear Depression Is LIkely

Despite rosy financial forecasts made by economists this spring, our fears that the nation is about to sink into another depression are reaching depressing extremes. A new CNN poll reveals that nearly half of Americans believe a 1930s-scale depression is possible within the next 12 months.