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PhillyInc sees similiarities in 'news' from last June

Greek debt problems, concern over U.S. economy, and possible pullback by the Chinese from buying U.S. securities are headlines in 2011 as they were a year ago.

One look at the world business headlines makes me think it's still 2010 rather than 2011.

We're dwelling on Greece's debt woes, just like last year. Today, the IMF said it was open to delaying Greece's repayment of loans. The AP story uses the phrase "critical juncture," which I think has been used 250 times in the last 365 days.

We want reassurance from the Federal Reserve about the state of the economy. Today, Ben Bernanke will give a speech in Atlanta that will be dissected by Fed watchers for clues. But really, while he's no inscrutable Greenspan, do you think Bernanke would ever bluntly say "run for the hills" or "shoot for the moon"? Didn't think so.

We hope foreign investors will continue to buy billions and billions in U.S. securities to help us deficit-finance our way of living. Oops, a Chinese official made some comments that the world's No. 2 economy needs to guard against risks from its "excessive" holdings of U.S. assets should the dollar continue to weaken. Here's Reuters' report.

In case you missed it from today's Inquirer, the Nutter administration is combining two city-operated workforce development organizations into one that will be chaired by the former CEO of Independence Blue Cross, Joseph Frick. But the merger won't actually occur until May 2012.

Finally, we'll get a sense of job openings, hires and "separations" today when the Bureau of Labor Statistics releases its monthly stats (known as JOLTS) for April. There were 3.1M job openings at the end of March. When it's out at 10 a.m., you can find the data on the BLS website here.