Weekly Wrap: BofA pays and the Labor Dept. delivers

A sign marks the location of the Bank of America Corporate Center, which houses the corporate headquarters for Bank of America in Charlotte, N.C.

Today's weekly breakdown of the business world's biggest scoops is between New York bureau chief Heidi Moore and John Carney from CNBC. 

On Bank of America settling with its stockholders...

Heidi Moore: We can't even have nostalgia, it's still all alive for us. This is why we had Occupy Wall Street and all that other stuff. It's nice to have that occassional reminder -- oh yeah, that happened.

John Carney: I'm very cynical but I'm happy that Bank of America was forced to pay out this amount of money. This is billions of dollars they were forced to pay out because they were lying during the financial crisis. When everybody was saying, 'Oh, everybody's in a panic because they don't trust the banks' it turns out it was a good idea not to trust the banks because they were lying.

On news from the Labor Department that the economy has added half a million more jobs than originally thought...

Carney: That is a terrible thing to have to brag about, that you just barely didn't lose more jobs than were made overall. The economy has been showing some signs of life, and that's helped Obama. The economy was stronger -- Americans feel a little better about the economy. I don't think it's the technical change that will make a big difference.

Moore: I think we depend too much on numbers, honestly. A philosopher in the 1930s said, 'Don't look at the map, look at the territory' and we've become obsessed with these maps, these numbers that tell us where we ought to be. Whereas if you look at the territory of the economy, it's about 14, 15 million americans who are currently out of a job.

On the general economy...

Carney: I am very nervous. Had a meeting with some people in a round table, did a survey of CEOs who are very pessimistic about what's happening. Things are shrinking ... that's bad news for us. 

Moore: You could kinda drive yourself crazy to see what's up what's down. Obviously, housing is doing really well and the idea is that if housing improves all of us will magically feel rich. I admit, I'm skeptical of this idea.

For more, listen to the podcast audio above.

About the author

Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, public radio’s program on business and the economy.

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