Some are blind; all are disabled. But on the banks of the river Congo, between Kinshasa and Brazzaville, they are the kings of commerce. Because they can travel at reduced prices and pay no customs duty, their handicap is a gold mine. The tradesmen use their disability to escape a life of begging.
Growth in China's manufacturing slowed in February amid efforts to curb overcapacity in some industries and cool inflation by tightening control over bank lending, two surveys showed Monday. The state-affiliated China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing said its purchasing managers index, or PMI, slipped to 52 in February from January's 55.8 on a 100-point scale. Numbers above 50 show manufacturing activity expanding. There were clear signs of weakening in many components of the index, the federation said in a statement.
Times feel really tough out there for the Americans. Housing is still a bust and unemployment is high. But the worst is over. One reason is the yield curve. This indicator has a fantastic track record. It's saying we're not headed into another "dip." It's saying there's a boom ahead.