A Week's Worth

Unemployment fell, but the economy only added 110,000 jobs. That's the smallest rise since last summer and only half of what economists had expected. The unemployment rate stood at 5.2 percent last month. The stock market, meanwhile, carried its dismal decline of the first quarter into the second quarter, with the Dow falling for the fourth straight week. Traders were spooked by a new high in oil prices, above $57 a barrel, and concerns that the Federal Reserve would boost interest rates faster than expected.

Think small: Small businesses don't share Wall Street's gloom. In fact, 85 percent report seeing growth opportunities, up from 72 percent a year ago and 56 percent in 2003, according to a semiannual survey from American Express. More than half of the businesses (57 percent) say they expect revenues to grow this year, while only 7 percent foresee a decline.

Summer job outlook: It's improving, thanks to the pickup in the economy and a shortage of foreign workers, according to an analysis from global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas. The best opportunities for teens lie in areas often overlooked, including state and local government.

Weather affects shopping, as everyone knows. But what weather discourages it the most? Heavy snow, according to 45 percent of households surveyed by the International Council of Shopping Centers and SDI/Weather Trends. Rain dampened spending for 37 percent, excessive cold 35 percent, and excessive heat 30 percent.

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