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Financial 411: Weekly Business Roundup

Friday, July 22, 2011

Markets

Stocks were mixed Friday. The Dow declined 43 points, ending the week at 12,681. But positive reports from chipmakers pushed the Nasdaq 24 points higher, to 2,859. The S&P 500 gained a single point, settling at 1,345.

Reviewing This Week's Business Headlines

The big banks released their second quarter earnings reports this week. It was bad news at Bank of America, which had its biggest quarterly loss ever - $9 billion - connected with a lawsuit the bank settled. Goldman Sachs made a profit of $1 billion. Morgan Stanley lost more than $500 million. We'll talk about why some analysts are disappointed in the latest reports, and why others are cheering.

There's still no deal on raising America's debt limit, which is the amount of money our government can borrow. But some on Wall Street have cooked up plans to make money in the event our government defaults on its debt. We'll explain how.

Turning to local matters, the unemployment rate in the city rose last month to 8.7 percent. Jobs were lost in financial services and government, but there were gains in private schools and restaurants.

And speaking of jobs, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has officially kicked off a competition for universities to open an applied sciences campus in the city. The idea is to pick a partner to open a brand new research center, which will bring students to start.

Down the line, Bloomberg said it could become an engine for tens of thousands of new jobs as well.

We'll talk about who's interested, and the rest of this week's business headlines, with Greg David, director of the Business & Economics Reporting Program at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.

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