Joel Schectman

Trying to Smoke Out More Taxes

Faced with a mounting budget crisis, New York Gov. David Paterson is waging a fight to tax cigarettes sold on Native American reservations. At issue is more than $150 million in taxes, the state says.

Wall Street's Jobless-Claim Numerology

The stock market can be downright superstitious when it comes to symbolic numbers. The latest bad figures for Wall Street came yesterday, after the Labor Department announced that new unemployment numbers for last week reached 500,000. We look at the fine print.

No Consensus on Future of Housing Finance

Three years after the collapse of the housing market, are we any wiser? If we measure what we learned from the real-estate bust by the level of agreement at yesterday's Treasury Department Conference on the Future of Housing Finance, we haven't learned much.

Is the Fed 'Out of Bullets'?

The Dow plummeted 265 points today as traders worried that the Federal Reserve may be out of tricks to goose the economy. The Fed said yesterday that the economic recovery is slowing down.

COBRA Aid Left Out of Medicare Package

Congress declined to help laid-off workers stay on employers' health-insurance rolls in the Medicare package passed yesterday. Democrats managed to push through $16 billion in extra Medicaid assistance to states. But to do so, they had to leave COBRA subsidies out of the package.