The XX Factor

Recession Briefing 7.8

Many of America’s high-end wineries are reeling from the economic downturn , as even wealthy drinkers slash spending on fine wines. ( Wall Street Journal )

The recession is increasing the number of deaths from suicide, murder and heart attacks  - but cutting the number of people killed in road accidents. ( Financial Times )

The weak economy and a limp housing market have meant that many more people in this ordinarily footloose nation are staying put , unable to sell their homes, find a job, or just too uncertain about what the future may hold. ( MSNBC )

Stimulus struggling: Five months after Congress approved a massive package of spending and tax cuts, the jobless rate is still climbing and the White House is scrambling to reassure an anxious public. ( Washington Post )

Drivers are spending less time stuck in rush-hour traffic as high gas prices and the economic downturn force many Americans to change how they commute. ( Associated Press )

The Treasury Department has assembled a team to examine what could yet bring the economy down and has identified several trouble spots in the lending industry. ( Washington Post )

U.S. mortgage fraud reports jumped 36 percent last year , according to the FBI. ( Reuters )

Officials with the National Council of La Raza and the NAACP say the recession is impacting African-American and Hispanic workers at a disproportionate rate. ( Denver Business Journal )

Consumers aren’t buying - and as a result, they’re not buying the magazine Consumer Reports either. At least not as much as in previous years.  ( PaidContent )

A growing list of hard-hit communities across the country are lowering or suspending impact fees in the hope of spurring development. ( Associated Press )