Chin Up in the Downswing

positive economic news during recession

Bernanke and Obama See Signs of Reviving Economy, Cancer Vaccine Developers’ Stock is Up

April 14, 2009 05:15 PM
by Anne Szustek
In separate speeches, President Obama and Federal Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke point to indications of economic turnaround; good news about Dendreon’s cancer vaccine helped to pull up other pharmaceutical stocks.

Bernanke: “Fundamentally Optimistic About our Economy”

Cautioning that the financial sector and credit markets need to stabilize, “I am fundamentally optimistic about our economy,” Federal Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke said during a speech today at Atlanta’s Morehouse College. He pointed to slowing in the economy’s “sharp decline” on factors such as consumer spending and home sales. “A leveling out of economic activity is the first step toward recovery,” Bernanke continued.

Corporate Behavior Gets Positive Reinforcement

President Barack Obama, along similar lines as his earlier “glimmers of hope” speech and Bernanke’s speech, pointed out that the $787 stimulus package, promulgated in February, was beginning “to generate signs of economic progress.” Reuters wrote that the president noted that “schools and police departments had canceled planned layoffs, clean energy companies and construction companies were rehiring workers, and home-owners were refinancing at lower interest rates.” 

Cancer Vaccine Development Spurs Stock Rally

Seattle-based biotech company Dendreon saw a 160 percent jump in share price during trading late this morning, on the back of news that a crucial clinical trial of its prostate cancer vaccine Provenge was successful. “While the company didn't specify at this time how much longer the patients lived, it said it would release further details at a medical meeting slated for April 28,” MarketWatch. Other developers of cancer “vaccines,” so called because they use human cells to stimulate the immune system, saw share price rises Tuesday.

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