Economy Now

Instant reaction and smart charts on economic trends.
  • Inside China's $2.2 trillion budget

    How is China's government spending taxpayer money?

    This is not an easy question to answer. The most populous country in the world ranks among the worst in matters of government transparency.

    The Chinese government budget, presented to the public each March as a fait accompli, contains only scattered information about spending priorities and no details about specific programs. It is notoriously difficult to find specific budget information for individual government MORE

    - Jan 15, 2014 4:05 AM ET
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  • It is good to be the boss!

    Bosses actually are happier.

    So says a new Pew Research Center study that found bosses are more likely to be "very satisfied" with their jobs, family life and financial situation than their underlings.

    And more bosses than workers say they plan to stay put, especially since nearly two-thirds think they are compensated fairly for their efforts.

    Share your story: Do bosses have it better than workers?

    But when it comes to gender workplace issues, MORE

    - Jan 9, 2014 10:45 AM ET
  • Just how wide is New York City's income gap?

    Closing New York City's income gap is at the top of new Mayor Bill de Blasio's agenda.

    In his inaugural address, the city's first Democratic mayor in two decades said: "We are called to put an end to economic and social inequalities that threaten to unravel the city we love."

    But that will be a Herculean lift. A new report from the City University of New York's Graduate Center shows that the MORE

    - Jan 9, 2014 10:05 AM ET
  • Long-term unemployed still face dim job prospects

    Friday morning could bring more good news about the economy when the Labor Department releases its latest monthly jobs report.

    Economists surveyed by CNNMoney predict the report will show 193,000 jobs were added in December, consistent with a story of solid hiring in the last four months of 2013. The unemployment rate is expected to remain at 7% as some workers rejoin the labor force.

    And on Wednesday, payroll processor ADP (ADP) MORE

    - Jan 8, 2014 10:05 AM ET
  • Asia stumble a major risk for global economy

    Here's a scary thought: What if the economies of China and India -- the world's two major growth engines -- slowed suddenly and dramatically?

    Is the world prepared for such an event? How far would the collateral damage extend? Perhaps most importantly, what are the chances of a crash in Asia?

    According to Larry Summers and Lant Pritchett, these are questions that policymakers should be thinking about -- and the all-star economists MORE

    - Nov 19, 2013 4:29 AM ET
  • Super-rich go on a $402 million spending spree

    By Aaron Smith

    The ultra-wealthy are paying mind-boggling prices for lots of bright, shiny objects this week, spending hundreds of millions of dollars on paintings, sculpture and jewelry in just the last few days.


    The latest record-breaking purchase was the winning $105.4 million bid on Wednesday for "Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster)," a painting by Andy Warhol,  sold at a  Sotheby's auction.

    "Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster)" by Andy Warhol: $105.4 million

    Sotheby's said that MORE

    Nov 14, 2013 4:18 PM ET
  • U.S. health care: We pay more, wait longer than other countries

    Americans are much more likely to have trouble paying medical bills or getting a quick appointment with a doctor than their peers in 10 other high-income, industrialized countries, according to a new study.

    Even Americans with insurance are more likely to forgo care because of high costs and to struggle to pay big bills, according to the survey, conducted by The Commonwealth Fund. And the United States spends far more on MORE

    - Nov 14, 2013 5:00 AM ET
  • 3 mysteries looming over China's economy

    It now seems very likely that China's economy will meet or exceed Beijing's 7.5% growth target for 2013. For President Xi Jinping, still in his first year of office, this is very good news.

    At the same time, heading into a pivotal meeting of the Communist Party, the country's policy landscape is unusually unsettled. Clarity on three key items -- local debt, economic reform plans and the Shanghai Free Trade Zone -- would MORE

    - Oct 29, 2013 10:48 PM ET
  • Government jobs at lowest in 47 years... or 4 years

    Federal jobs are at their lowest level level in 47 years... or 4 years. It depends on how you look at it.

    About 2.7 million people worked for Uncle Sam in September, not including military. According to the Department of Labor, that's the lowest number since 1966! Could it be that the government workforce is at its smallest size since the Lyndon Johnson administration?

    Not exactly.

    Digging deeper into MORE

    - Oct 22, 2013 2:35 PM ET
  • Get ready for higher health insurance costs at work

    Don't be surprised if you're shelling out more for health care on the job next year.

    After several years of relatively moderate spending increases, health care costs are set to jump in 2014.

    Employees will spend just under $5,000 on premiums and out-of-pocket expenses next year, according to new research by Aon Hewitt, an employee benefits administrator. That's up 9.5% from the year before.

    This is because overall health care spending will increase MORE

    - Oct 22, 2013 5:00 AM ET
  • Delayed jobs report to be released Tuesday

    The wait is finally over.

    The Department of Labor plans to release its September jobs report on Tuesday, October 22. The report, which tallies the number of jobs created each month and calculates the nation's unemployment rate, has been delayed since October 4 amid the federal government shutdown.

    During that time, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which compiles the report, had only three staff members working. As a result, the agency was also unable to collect MORE

    - Oct 17, 2013 4:59 PM ET
  • Fitch warns again on China debt

    When the current crop of Chinese leaders assumed power, they wasted no time in ordering an extensive audit of local government debt.

    Presumably the new team, led by President Xi Jinping, wanted to know what everyone else wants to know: How has China's massive expansion of credit since 2008 affected state finances?

    The uncomfortable truth is that nobody has a great handle on exactly how much local governments have spent.

    The bean counters MORE

    - Sep 18, 2013 5:32 AM ET
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  • Economists react as Summers drops out of Fed chair race

    Move over football tweets. When the news broke Sunday afternoon that Larry Summers had withdrawn his name from the Fed chair race, economists were quick to react on Twitter.

    Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor under President Clinton, spoke highly of Federal Reserve Vice Chair Janet Yellen, who is considered the frontrunner for the position now that Summers dropped out.

    Janet Yellen understands that good jobs at good wages are good for MORE

    - Sep 15, 2013 10:40 PM ET
  • Make money by creating Obamacare video

    Want to earn some cash? Create a video explaining why younger Americans need health insurance.

    The Obama administration is doling out $30,000 in cash and more than 100 prizes in a video contest aimed at attracting young people to the Obamacare insurance exchanges. This demographic is considered key to the exchanges' success because the young are usually healthier than the general population. Their enrollment will help lower premiums for everyone.

    The government MORE

    - Sep 12, 2013 5:05 PM ET
  • Economy recovers, income doesn't

    The nation may be in better economic shape, but that doesn't mean Americans' paychecks are.

    Median annual household income has fallen 4.4% to $52,098 in the four years since the economic recovery began.

    Black Americans took the biggest income hit since the Great Recession ended.

    Median household income for blacks dropped by more than $4,000 to $33,519. Whites, on the other hand, saw their median income slip just over $2,000 to $58,000.

    Married couples MORE

    - Aug 22, 2013 10:42 AM ET
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