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Econ Focus

Econ Focus (formerly Region Focus) is the economics magazine of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. It covers economic issues affecting the Fifth Federal Reserve District and the nation and is published on a quarterly basis by the Bank's Research Department.

Econ Focus

Fourth Quarter 2010

Region Focus, Fourth Quarter 2010

Cover Story

What Causes Recoveries? How good policy and good luck can trigger the upward side of the business cycle

As economies recover from recessions the transition often can be slow and unpredictable. Yet economists have studied this process less than one might expect. Many factors play important roles in determining the recovery process, including prudent monetary policy, clean balance sheets, consumer and business confidence, and exogenous shocks.

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Debts and Defaults: The growing market -- and tab -- for student loans

Student loan debt has increased greatly in recent years, as have the default rates on that debt. Rising tuition rates, federal subsidies, and securitization contributed to the increase, but new regulations may lead to significant changes for both lenders and borrowers.
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Caretaking the Culture: Art museums strive for financial stability

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts recently unveiled the biggest expansion in its history, designed to turn the 75-year-old museum into a public gathering place. Although it's a challenge for museums to charge visitors in a way that fully pays the bills, ensuring widespread accessibility to patrons is an important part of their mission.
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Triangulating the Recession: Knowledge jobs lend resistance, but not immunity, to downturn

The Triangle region of North Carolina may not be recession-proof, but it's surely cushioned by its mix of high-skilled jobs in fields such as the life sciences, pharmaceuticals, and math-intensive professions.

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