National News

Feb 21, 2023

Wall Street tumbles, Dow loses 697 on fears about high rates

Stocks tumbled to their worst day in two months Tuesday, buckling under worries about higher interest rates and their tightening squeeze on Wall Street and the economy. The S&P 500 fell 2% for its sharpest drop since the market was selling off in December. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 697 points, or 2.1%, while the Nasdaq composite sank 2.5%. Home Depot fell to one of the marke[...]

natural gas prices
Feb 20, 2023

Plunging natural gas prices relieve inflation pressure

The price of natural gas used to heat homes and generate electricity is plunging this year, thanks to a mild winter in the U.S. and Europe — bringing some relief to consumers and helping drive down inflation. The fuel, which in the U.S. is extracted mainly from shale deposits in Texas and around Pennsylvania, accounts for nearly 25% of residential energy needs, making it a big driver in last [...]

Feb 17, 2023

Fed’s Barkin: ‘Slow progress’ on inflation, sees more hikes

A top Federal Reserve official downplayed recent signs that the economy is strengthening, but also said he is prepared to keep raising interest rates in smaller increments as often as needed to quell inflation. Richmond Federal Reserve President Thomas Barkin said Friday that recent data showing an unusually robust job gain and a spike in retail sales last month reflected in part the impac[...]

Feb 17, 2023

Average long-term US mortgage rate jumps to 6.32% this week

The average long-term U.S. mortgage rate jumped this week to its highest level in five weeks, bad news for home shoppers heading into the spring buying season. Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac reported Thursday that the average on the benchmark 30-year rate rose to 6.32% from 6.12% last week. The average rate a year ago was 3.92%. The average long-term rate reached a two-decade high of 7.08% in th[...]

CBO 10-year Budget and Economic Outlook
Feb 17, 2023

CBO projects higher unemployment, slow exit from inflation

The Congressional Budget Office said Wednesday that it expects the U.S. economy to stagnate this year with the unemployment rate jumping to 5.1% — a bleak outlook that was paired with a 10-year projection that publicly held U.S. debt would nearly double to $46.4 trillion in 2033. The office's updated 10-year Budget and Economic Outlook outlined stark expectations for the decade ahead, where[...]

Feb 17, 2023

Retail sales jump as Americans defy inflation and rate hikes

America's consumers rebounded last month from a weak holiday shopping season by boosting their spending at stores and restaurants at the fastest pace in nearly two years, underscoring the economy's resilience in the face of higher prices and multiple interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve. The government said Wednesday that retail sales jumped 3% in January, after having sunk the previou[...]

Feb 16, 2023

18% drop since 2020 in people with reported medical debt

The number of people with medical debt on their credit reports fell by 8.2 million — or 17.9% — between 2020 and 2022, according to a report Tuesday from the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. White House officials said in a separate draft report that the two-year drop likely stems from their policies. Among the programs they say contributed to less debt was an expansion of the Obam[...]

Feb 16, 2023

Biden, Yellen warn of ‘catastrophe’ if debt limit not raised

President Joe Biden and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned Tuesday of a potential economic crisis if a deal isn't reached to increase the federal debt ceiling. They raised the alarm during speeches to the National Association of Counties, which was holding a conference in Washington. Biden said many local governments have recovered from the pandemic, but "some in Congress are putting tha[...]

Feb 14, 2023

Wall Street ends mixed after swerving on inflation report

Several sharp reversals for stocks left Wall Street mixed on Tuesday after a report showed inflation is continuing to slow, but perhaps not as quickly or as smoothly as hoped. The S&P 500 finished the day virtually where it started, edging down by less than 0.1%, after swerving between gains and losses. The Dow lost 156 points, or 0.5%, while the Nasdaq went on the widest run. It finished 0[...]

Feb 14, 2023

US inflation slows to 6.4%, but price pressures re-emerge

The pace of consumer price increases eased again in January compared with a year earlier, the latest sign that the high inflation that has gripped Americans for nearly two years is slowly easing. At the same time, Tuesday’s consumer price report from the government showed that inflationary pressures in the U.S. economy remain stubborn and are likely to keep prices elevated well into this ye[...]

Feb 14, 2023

Idaho legislator introduces new bills to remove hospital tax exemptions

A first-year legislator is pushing a new bill in the Idaho Legislature that would give local county commissions the authority to remove the property tax exemptions in place for hospitals. Rep. Josh Tanner, R-Eagle, also is sponsoring a second new bill that would immediately remove the property tax exemption for a hospital’s outlying administrative and medical facilities that are not a part of[...]

Feb 13, 2023

Wall Street rises ahead of hotly anticipated inflation data

Stocks are rising Monday as Wall Street waits for a report to show whether inflation is continuing to cool or perhaps setting the market up for worse pain. The S&P 500 was 1.1% higher ahead of Tuesday’s report on inflation at the consumer level across the country. It’s coming off its worst week in nearly two months. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 323 points, or 1%, at 34,193[...]