Here are the stories we talked about on the Clark Howard Show Labor Day, 2011

  • Stock markets in Europe and Asia fall on U.S. Unemployment Report. As we discussed yesterday on my radio show, the absolutely abysmal jobs report for August has shaken world economic markets. Stock markets around the world reflect a new pessimism about the U.S.’ s ability to pull itself (and the rest of the world) out of a very deep economic hole. Are we facing another recession? Possibly. Stock markets from South Africa to Europe to Asia are all facing drops of anywhere from 2 to 5 percent.
  • Post Office Going Postal? The U.S. post office is facing possible default, after posting a $9.2 billion shortfall. This week, the Post Office begins closing offices across the country, throwing more Americans out of work. The Post Office currently has 560,000 employees and may not have enough funds to pay everyone by next Summer. As of the end of September, the Post Office will run out of room to borrow against its $15 billion line of credit, and they may not have enough cash to make a $5.5 billion pension payment that’s due. Will the Post Office shut down? Do we still need a Post Office? Honestly, I hardly get anything worthwhile in my mail anymore. Maybe the Post Office should be privatized.
  • 10 Years Later, Cantor Fitzgerald is Thriving. Located on the 101st floor of the World Trade Center, bond middleman Cantor Fitzgerald lost 75 percent of its workers, some 650+ people, in the 9/11 disaster. Ten years later, the company has regained its footing, reformulated its business, and kept all of the promises made to its survivors and the families of those employees who perished – including his own brother. The New York Times takes a deep look at Howard Lutnik, who wasn’t particularly well-liked, but who took care of his people and made good on his financial promises.
  • More Middle Class Workers Fall into Homelessness. This week’s Time online has a story about a film producer who used to earn in the six-figures who is now homeless. He just stopped getting work. The unemployment rate in California is now officially at 12 percent, but if you add in all of the other folks who are under-employed or just gave up, the true picture of unemployment is now 22 percent in California or 24 percent in Los Angeles. That’s 25 percent of the population that is unemployed! Read this story – it could happen to anyone – even you.

Are you a Wells Fargo or Wachovia Customer? Here’s How to Get a Loan Modification

If you have a Wachovia or Wells Fargo Mortgage, and are having trouble making your payments, sign up for the Wells Fargo Homeownership Preservation Workshop September 8 and 9, 2011, in Atlanta, at the Georgia World Congress Center.

They have room for 1,500 people on Tuesday and Wednesday (September 8 and 9) at the Georgia World Congress Center. Call and reserve your spot today: 1-800-405-8067  (leave a message and you will get your name on the sheet for tomorrow or Wednesday.)

Documents needed for the event:

  • Most recently filed and signed federal tax return with all schedules, including Schedule E – Supplemental Income and Loss
  • Most recent statement for every Savings account, Money Market account, CD, bond, stock, IRA and 401K
  • Most recent statement for every credit card/department store card, auto/student loan, other mortgages/liens
  • For each salaried borrower: A month’s worth of recent paystubs and most recent W-2s
  • For each self-employed borrower: Most recent quarterly or year-to-date profit/loss statement and 90 days bank statements
  • For each borrower with income such as Social Security, disability or death benefits, pension, adoption assistance,public assistance, or unemployment: Benefits statement or letter from provider stating amount, frequency and duration of the benefit, and two most recent bank statements showing receipt of such payment
  • For each borrower relying on alimony or child support as qualifying income:* Divorce or other court decree, or separation agreement or other written agreement filed with the court stating amount and period of time it will be received, and two most recent bank statements showing receipt of such payment
  • For borrowers relying on rental income: Lease agreement(s)

*Alimony, child support or separate maintenance income need not be revealed if the borrower or co-borrower does not choose to have it considered for repaying the loan or for loss mitigation review of the loan.

Beware of foreclosure rescue scams

This is a Wells Fargo Home Mortgage workshop designed to provide options for homeowners who are having difficulty keeping up with mortgage payments. If you have any concerns about the validity of this workshop, go to to view a video from past events.