Feb. 10 - Summary of Business Headlines: Obama's 2013 budget to show sharp drop in funding shortfall, Fed Chairman Bernanke issues call to action to save housing, LinkedIn soars 17%; U.S. stocks snap five-week winning streak. Carmen Roberts reports.
It's budget time in Washington and President Obama says the deficit is coming down -- sharply. The budget Mr. Obama plans to present to Congress on Monday projects the funding shortfall will be $901 billion in 2013. The deficit for 2012 is seen hitting a whopping $1.3 trillion. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke says one of the biggest economic concerns though is the housing market. He issued a call for action Friday to boost home prices and sales. One way to help, he says, is to make more loans available to real estate investors for bulk purchases of homes. On Wall Street LinkedIn soared 17 percent after the professional networking service gave an upbeat first quarter forecast. Friday was the best day for LinkedIn since its stock debuted in May. For most investors it was another Greek drama. Investors are concerned about European and U.S. bank exposure to Greek debt, but an indirect fallout also a concern. Sam Stovall, Standard & Poor's Chief Equity Strategist: SOUNDBITE: SAM STOVALL, CHIEF EQUITY STRATEGIST, STANDARD & POOR'S (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Between 15 and 20 percent of U.S. exports go to Europe, and so if Europe as a whole tends to slow down because of the austerity measures that are being embraced by other countries there as well, then we might find that that brings down economic growth in the U.S. and slow the increase in earnings that we have been seeing." U.S. stocks snapped a five-week winning streak, with the S&P posting its biggest percentage drop so far this year. For the week the Dow and the Nasdaq each lost a fraction of a percent. In Europe stocks suffered their worst loss since January as the Greek chaos caused investors to bailed on banks. After the markets closed, the Greek cabinet approved the EU's austere bailout bill. Parliment may consider it as early as Sunday. Carmen Roberts. Reuters