The XX Factor

Recession Briefing 8.7

For the first time since the decade began, Americans are having fewer babies, and some experts are blaming the economy. ( New York Times )

The American economy lost 247,000 jobs in July, and in a reversal, the unemployment rate fell slightly, to 9.4 percent, the government reported Friday. ( New York Times )

Americans have been losing their jobs in droves, yet one group has gained ground in employment during this recession: workers 55 and older. The reason is economic necessity. ( McClatchy )

There’s just something about a recession that makes people want to do funny things. Like wannabe comics who are out of a job and hoping amateur hour at comedy clubs could be the ticket to a paycheck - and maybe stardom. ( Associated Press )

Applications for sperm donation are way up across the country. Selling sperm for cash has long been considered a get-rich-quick scheme of sorts for men during recessions. ( Minyanville )

White House economic adviser Christina Romer said on Thursday she expects the U.S. economy to return to normal rates of historical growth once the current financial crisis is past. ( Reuters )

Federally sponsored summer meals programs are reaching only a fraction of the nation’s children who qualify, and government officials and advocacy groups say the recession has placed millions more children at risk of going hungry. ( Associated Press )

In a growing number of cases, recession-related stress in parents has led to child abuse . ( Arizona Republic )

In recession-racked Detroit, the lack of food is a serious problem. As the area’s economy worsens –unemployment was over 16% in July - food stamp applications and pantry visits have surged. ( CNN/Money )

“If domestic spending has been the engine of US economic growth in the past few decades, then the coming recovery - and the job creation that comes with it - won’t be a smooth ride,” writes Albert Bozzo. “Much like the American auto industry, the broader economy is undergoing a sea change.” ( NBC Chicago )