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MID-DAY UPDATE: Economic news bad. Stock prices good.

Bill Radke Jul 22, 2010

Sales of previously occupied homes fell in June; new unemployment benefit plans rose. Yet at this writing, Wall Street’s jumping. What do stock investors know?

Maybe this: Recognize these names? Caterpillar. 3M. UPS. AT&T. Xerox. All are predicting a better day ahead.

Wall Street reporter Jeremy Hobson is getting a reality check. He’s in Memphis talking to a woman who feels like a prisoner in her home because she’s surrounded by boarded-up foreclosures and violent squatters.

Maybe putting down roots isn’t for everyone. The government may back away from a decades-old love affair with homeownership.

Four of the world’s biggest oil companies are forming an oil spill rapid-response unit. BP is not in the club.

The new financial rules overhaul cracks down on ratings agencies. So ratings agencies say fine, we’re out. Whoops.

Oh, and a new study suggests summer vacation … stresses workers out.

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