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Recession is definitely over…

Jim Hamilton says the recession is definitely over after the recent GDP data. My guess was that the recession ended sometime between June and September in 2009.

New home sales up big time, but don’t get too excited

Sales of new homes increased 27%  in March, the biggest monthly increase in 47 years.  The sharp jump was largely due to the fact that the first-time home buyer credit program is going to expire on April 30.

As seen in the chart below (graph courtesy of Northern Trust), the level of new home sales in March (411,000) still remains slightly below the July 2009 mark, or 70% below the peak recorded in July 2005.

DGC - Chart 1 - 04 23 10

Also watch this video interview of Mark Zandi, Chief Economist at Moody’s Economy.com, on the housing market outlook.

China lens on America

It’s been a while to have Tom Ashbrook’ On Point on this blog.

This Hour, On Point: how the U.S. looks from rising China.

Tom Ashbrook with guests:

Peter Hessler, staff writer for The New Yorker. His latest book is “Country Driving: A Journey Through China from Farm to Factory.” Listen back to the On Point show about it. His new article for The New Yorker, about returning to the U.S. after years of living in China, is called “Go West: Scenes from An American Homecoming.”

Jia Cheng, a 28-year-old graduate student at Harvard Business School. She has moved back and forth between the two cultures as a businesswoman working for both McKinsey & Co. and Goldman Sachs. She grew up in Shanghai and graduated from Fudan University.

Link to the program

Is Larry Summers quitting Obama?

Larry Summers may leave his current post at the end of the year.

Watch this video analysis: