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U.S. President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama walk with their daughters Malia and Sasha upon their return to the White House in Washington, D.C. from a vacation on Martha's Vineyard. - 


BILL RADKE: President Obama is back at work this week, after 10 days off in Martha's Vineyard. A lot of bad news came out while he was away -- the housing market was way down, so were the numbers on economic growth for earlier this year.

As Marketplace's Nancy Marshall Genzer explains, the president's options for fixing the economy are limited.

NANCY MARSHALL GENZER: Over at the Federal Reserve, Ben Bernanke says he's done about everything he can. And Congress doesn't seem interested in approving any new stimulus spending to jump-start the economy. At least not before the November election. So what's a president to do?

QUINCY KROSBY: He needs to talk about the economy. He needs to talk about what he is going to do to turn things around.

Quincy Krosby is a market strategist at Prudential Financial. She says the president should highlight his plans to help small business. The White House has proposed a small business lending initiative.

Andrew Parmentier heads Height Analytics. He says the president can also talk about how the new health care and financial reform laws will affect businesses and consumers.

ANDREW PARMENTIER: Let's not forget what's been done. And what that's going to mean 6-12 months from now.

The president has been traveling around the country, talking about how the economic stimulus money is being spent. But Parmentier says the president needs to make more public statements on the economy. He says the markets need to hear from the president on a regular basis.

In Washington, I'm Nancy Marshall Genzer for Marketplace.