In The Morning News

AP: Housing Bill Advances Through Committee
Democrats "turned back a slew of Republican challenges to their housing rescue package Wednesday as they moved toward committee approval of the plan." Rep. J. Gresham Barrett (R-SC) amendment to allow the FHA to "reject a borrower solely based on a bad credit score or history of delinquency was rejected 36-33." The bill "is picking up support among some Republicans from areas hardest-hit by the mortgage meltdown, but most Republicans side with the Bush administration, which calls it an overly risky bailout." The Financial Services Committee also voted down a proposal by Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-TX) that "would have allowed mortgage holders to potentially recover some or all of their losses, rather than letting the FHA share a portion of the proceeds should a homeowner sell or refinance." Republicans also "failed in their attempts to add penalties on lenders if borrowers default on their refinanced loans - an attempt to discourage mortgage holders from unloading their worst-performing loans on the federal government."
USA Today: Pool Of Younger Workers Diminishing, Tightening Labor Force
"The number of Americans ages 25 to 44 has dropped 1.5% since 2000, shrinking the pool of young workers in some states despite a 7% increase in the country's overall population, according to a USA TODAY analysis of Census data to be released today." Immigration "has not been enough to offset the aging of the nation's 79 million baby boomers, which has depleted the ranks of young workers." The drop is "most obvious in the Northeast and Midwest, where most of the 20 states that registered declines of 5% or more in the 25-44 age group are located." But "big gains in the 25-44 age group occurred in fast-growing states in the South and Mountain West, where families and young singles can find jobs and affordable housing."
CNN/Money: Proper Diversification Seen As Necessary For Retirement Savings
Profiling one couple, Money writes, "Currently, nearly half of the $200,000 the Reeses have saved sits in a money-market fund earning a mere 3.1%. And it's not just because of the current market. The fact is, Brad and Mindy haven't been comfortable taking investment risk." Financial planner Robert Bolen "recommends that the Reeses put at least 70% of their money in stocks (with the remainder going into bonds). If Brad and Mindy can stomach it, they could increase that to 85%, Bolen says. But the couple might not be emotionally prepared for that much exposure, especially in a choppy market."

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