Tell us your worries regarding economy
The signs are everywhere: inflation up, house prices falling, stock market in a tailspin, job losses mounting. Many economists believe we're headed toward a recession. That means different things to people at different stages of their lives: college students about to graduate, young married couples with children, experienced workers preparing for retirement or seniors living on a fixed income. The Bee wants to know what you're most concerned about economically, and how that relates to where you are in life. Contact staff writer Ben van der Meer at 578-2331 or firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts, which may be used in a Bee story.
Ameritrade site slow after traffic rush
Many TD Ameritrade customers had trouble logging onto the online brokerage's Web site Tuesday morning as U.S. markets opened a volatile day with a major sell-off driven by fears of a recession. The problems came a few days after the brokerage announced plans to upgrade its system so it could better handle a crush of trades. Ameritrade spokeswoman Katrina Becker said the Web site loaded slowly during the log-on process because so many people were trying to log onto the system at the same time. She did not have an exact number. Becker said the Ameritrade.com Web site never crashed, and once customers logged on, trades were executed normally. She said the problems were resolved by midday.
Credit crisis takes big bite from banks
The credit crisis all but wiped out fourth-quarter earnings at Bank of America Corp. and Wachovia Corp., but the banks did make some money -- something that can't be said for Citigroup and some other Wall Street financial firms. Profits fell 95 percent at Bank of America and 98 percent at Wachovia. The numbers, worse than analysts expected, show that the global credit squeeze still is causing more customers to fall behind on their bills and banks to lose money on securities they own.
Court rejects case of Enron investors
The Supreme Court dealt a probable fatal blow Tuesday to Enron Corp. investors' efforts to recover $40 billion from Wall Street banks in the 2001 collapse of the Texas energy company. Without comment, the justices refused to hear arguments in the Enron case. Attorneys for shareholders immediately vowed to return to federal court in Houston in an attempt to prove that the investment banks misled the public and helped conceal Enron's true financial condition.