The stock market revealed its vulnerability again on Thursday, in this age of high-speed electronic trading. The Nasdaq, where more than 3,000 tech-related companies are publicly traded, was shut down for more than three hours.
Mark Mercer, 54, has been standing in Philadelphia's financial district holding a sign that reads: "I don't want your change. I need a job." Dressed for the office in black shoes and a black suit, Mercer says he's handed out more than 100 resumes.
"Remain aggressive." That's the message Attorney General Eric Holder says he has given to prosecutors around the country about pursuing wrongdoing by financial institutions — particularly, wrongdoing related to the financial crisis of 2008.
But as the five-year anniversary of the crisis approaches, the record of prosecutions against high-level Wall Street executives has been dismal.
More than 330,000 people filed new claims for unemployment insurance benefits last week. That sounds like a big number — and is a slight increase over the previous week — but it's being taken as some very good news. For a month, now, fewer new people are asking for unemployment insurance than at any time since November, 2007. That's before the Great Recession.