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February 20th, 2014
10:52 AM ET

Jack Lew on Minimum Wage, Immigration and Bitcoin

By Gregory Wallace

Jack Lew sees good signs for the economy both on Capital Hill and Main Street.

And his message to the rest of the world: there's work to be done.

The Treasury Secretary said he is encouraged by Congress, which in recent months agreed on a budget,spending bill and debt limit measure.

"Maybe - just maybe," Lew said, "we'll be able, for a couple of years, to keep doing business that way."

By handling these matters, Washington is sending a worldwide message, one Lew says he'll bring to a gathering of global financial leaders this week in Australia.

Lew spoke in an interview with CNN Chief Business Correspondent Christine Romans as he prepared for that G20 meeting. Here are five highlights from that interview:

1. Thanks, Washington: Last year's government shutdown and the brinkmanship before it took a toll on the economy. But what matters is that Washington is getting its act together.

"The last four months have been very different from the prior two years," he said.

And it's showing.

"You look at the economic growth over the last six months - (there's a) decided arc of progress," he said, specifically citing "sustained job growth."

But Lew acknowledged room for growth. The numbers support that: hiring in December and January was weak and far below expectations.


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Filed under: Economy • Money
April 25th, 2013
09:13 AM ET

'Prom indicator' of economic health? Christine Romans on what parents will spend in 2013

Christine Romans on a report showing parents will spent $1,139 on 2013 prom expenses and what it means for the economy.

Filed under: Economy
March 19th, 2013
07:48 AM ET

Report: Americans aren't saving enough for retirement

Christine Romans is minding your business with details from a study on retirement savings, and the latest on U.S. stock futures and world markets.

An EBRI report reveals that people are not putting aside enough for their retirement. “You’ve got 57% have less than $25,000 in savings,” Romans says. “That is not enough.” Only about 12% has more than $250,000 saved. “That’s where you want to be,” she says. But more people are less confident about saving for retirement due to job uncertainty, day-to-day expenses and high debt.

Stock futures indicated slightly lower opens this morning as the recession deepens in Europe. Cyprus is set to become the fourth European country to get a bailout and possibly be a headwind for U.S. stocks. After a major rally, “the market's been ripe for a pullback,” Romans says, “so tread carefully here.”

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Filed under: Economy • Personal savings • Retirement
March 5th, 2013
06:31 AM ET

MYB: Dow close to all-time high, as China sets ambitious economic goals for 2013

Christine Romans is minding your business this morning with an eye on U.S. stock futures. "All three of the major averages set for a higher open," Romans reports.

Also, China sets highly ambitious economic goals for the year. Romans has the details.

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Filed under: Economy • Minding Your Business • Stocks
February 25th, 2013
08:07 AM ET

Del. Gov. Markell: Forced spending cuts would stop recovery

This morning on "Early Start," Gov. Jack Markell (D-Del.) talks with CNN's John Berman on how the forced spending cuts could cripple public services and affect the economy.


Filed under: Economy • Forced spending cuts
February 21st, 2013
06:38 AM ET

Report: Consumers returning to recession spending habits

Christine Romans on the National Retail Federation's report showing consumers returning to recession spending habits.

Filed under: Consumers • Economy
February 13th, 2013
07:44 AM ET

Rep.Huelskamp on State of the Union: President Obama obsessed with raising taxes, didn't offer a plan

Tea Party Caucus member Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) reacts to President Obama's State of the Union address.

Filed under: Debt • Economy • State of the Union
February 13th, 2013
07:39 AM ET

President Obama says priority for U.S. is to become 'magnet' for manufacturing jobs

Christine Romans looks at President Obama's goal of making the U.S. a magnet for manufacturing jobs.

Filed under: Economy • Jobs • Manufacturing
February 13th, 2013
07:36 AM ET

Would a minimum wage hike hurt economy? Christine Romans breaks down the numbers


After promising five years ago to raise the federal minimum wage, President Obama finally unveiled a plan to do so on Tuesday.

In his State of the Union address, Obama pressed to raise the hourly rate in stages to $9 an hour in 2015, up from the current $7.25, and index it to inflation. The change, should it become law, would boost the wages of 15 million Americans, according to the White House.

This morning on "Early Start," Christine Romans looks at President Obama's State of the Union proposal to raise the federal minimum wage and how it could affect the economy.

READ MORE: The impact of a $9 minimum wage

Filed under: Economy • Jobs • Minimum wage
February 12th, 2013
09:02 AM ET

Rep. Cartwright: Optimism important in State of the Union address, North Korea nuke test puts sequestration in question

This morning on "Early Start," Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA) previews President Obama's State of the Union address and solutions for the economy, rocker Ted Nugent's scheduled appearance at the speech and North Korea's nuclear test.

Read the transcript after the jump.


Filed under: Economy • North Korea • State of the Union
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