With more than 13 million Americans out of work and wage increases so modest they’re failing to keep up with inflation, voters have put the economy and jobs at the top of their checklist of presidential issues. The Republican candidates all share the same broad approach: Spur private-sector confidence and job creation through permanent tax cuts, reduced federal deficits, and lighter regulatory burdens on businesses. In the same vein, they generally call for efforts to boost trade, encourage domestic oil and gas production, and limit the power of organized labor. But who has the best economic plan?
A federal judge blocked the trustee seeking money for Bernard Madoff's victims from interfering with New York state's $410 million settlement with Ezra Merkin, a Wall Street hedge fund manager accused of steering client money to the swindler. The settlement calls for Merkin to pay $405 million to investors over three years, and $5 million to New York State to cover fees and costs.