Saturday News and Notes

Unemployment: Real or Imagined
In Fortune magazine, Stephen Gandel contends that the problem with is that “the economy appears to have added 873,000 jobs in September alone. That pace of job growth, though, seems impossibly high, especially when you consider other measures of the economy.

“For instance, GDP is growing just 1.3%. That suggests job growth of about 125,000, not seven times that fast,” he adds.

Meanwhile, the New York Times found nothing awry with the numbers.

Republicans and Democrats viewed the numbers from different perspectives, but both shared a political slant. What may be clear after Friday is that there will be a closer examination of how the numbers are calculated moving forward.

Financial Regulation
It is not only in Congress that the Dodd-Frank bill is facing challenges, but in the courts as well. On Friday, a rule requiring mutual funds that invest in certain financial instruments to register with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission was the focus of arguments. So far, Dodd-Frank has lost on two counts, one pertaining to regulations designed to limit speculative commodities trading and another making it easier for shareholders to oust members of corporate boards.

Turkey and Syria
Once again, Turkey has fired mortar shells into Syria in response to a cross-border aattack by the rogue nation four days ago. The rising tensions have regional nations concerned that events could rapidly rise into a fuller-scale war.

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan issued a clear warning against Syria that it would be a “fatal mistake” if the regime of Bashar al-Assad continued to test Turkey.

Et Cetera
Are Americans addicted to prescription drugs?

What is at stake in the Venezuelan elections? According to Foreign Policy magazine, everything.

Political incompetence in Europe, Asia, and America could pose a greater threat to an economic recovery than anything else.

An Egyptian democracy activist warns that the revolution may be losing ground.

Looking with greater scrutiny into the jobs numbers finds that small business hiring slowed in September.



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