A Week's Worth
• What good is a rebound, if nonvoters get the jobs? That's what the White House must be asking. A Pew Hispanic Center report finds that noncitizens took more than a quarter of the 1.3 million new jobs created between April 2003 and March 2004, even though they represent less than a tenth of the US workforce. The picture looks a bit better for President Bush in 18 battleground states, which created nearly three-quarters of the new jobs. Noncitizens took only a fifth of those.
• Americans keep snapping up foreign goods faster than they sell their own products abroad. The current-account deficit, the broadest measure of trade because it includes investment flows and even foreign aid, swelled to a record $144.9 billion in the first quarter, exceeding the previous high of a year ago. Coming on top of the surprisingly big 0.8 percent jump in producer prices last month, the deficit number increases pressure on the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates when it meets at the end of this month.
• Debt busters: Credit-card holders are not only cutting their debt, they're less delinquent on the balances they still owe. In April, the share of delinquent accounts (where a monthly payment is more than 30 days late) fell to 4.52 percent. That's the lowest since August 2000 and the largest year-over-year decline since 1995, says Moody's.
• Contrary to popular wisdom, large banks can serve customers better than small ones, according to a study in Consumer Reports Money Adviser. The study found that supersizing your bank can slash ATM fees, boost convenience, give free online access and bill-payment services, and even offer better service.
• Don't bother me: Over half of Nevadans (52 percent) have unlisted phone numbers - the highest share of any state. Arizona and California are next, estimates Survey Sampling International. At the other end of the spectrum are three New England states: Vermont (7 percent), Maine (11 percent), and New Hampshire (15 percent).