Here are today's top headlines from the Marketplace Morning Report and from around the web.
As we wait for Friday's big monthly jobs report from the labor department, we just got an early look at the nation's employment situation for August. The job placement firm Challenger Gray and Christmas says companies announced 51,000 layoffs last month -- which was better than July, but still worse than last August. On the flip side, a bit of a disappointing report out today from payroll firm ADP -- that job growth in the private sector slowed in August, with employers adding only 91,000 jobs.
Oil is pushing higher as well, trading for almost $89 a barrel in New York.
U.S. factory orders rose strongly in July on the biggest jump in demand for autos in more than eight years and a surge in commercial airplane orders. The increase suggests supply chain disruptions created by the Japan crisis are easing.
Applications for U.S. home mortgages tumbled last week as demand for refinancing sagged for the second week in a row, an industry group said Wednesday.
Hewlett-Packard says it's going to try selling TouchPad tablets one more time. The company had said it was getting out of the business, and slashed the price from $499 to $99 earlier this month. Can you guess what happened? People finally bought them.
The Moscow offices of the British oil company BP were raided today by court officials. This follows yesterday's news that BP lost out to ExxonMobil on a deal to explore for oil in the lucrative Russian arctic.
A note of caution when buying an iPad -- at least if you're buying one in a McDonald's Parking lot. That's what a South Carolina woman was doing when she
paid two guys $180 for a new iPad. She thought it was a great deal, but when she drove home she discovered the tablet was actually just a piece of wood painted black -- with an Apple logo on it. The criminals did have an eye for detail though. The fake screen included fake icons for email, photos and the iPod application.
Volunteer firefighters in Pleasantville, Pa., are in the midst of a mail-in fundraising campaign, but don't send in your donation with the enclosed, pre-addressed envelope. Those envelopes have Pleasantville, N.Y. printed on them -- a city 375 miles away. The Fire Chief says to just bring your donation by the fire station.