In Egypt's first presidential debate, only the top two candidates participated. Voters go to the polls later this month to choose among a field of 13 candidates. The winner is expected to be decided in a runoff next month.
Now, the presidential election is expected to turn on the economy, which means that every bit of economic news takes on political significance. Trouble is, we don't always know what to make of it when we hear that unemployment claims fell again. Sounds good. Or that the trade deficit jumped. Not so good. NPR's Tamara Keith and Scott Horsley will now help us sort that out.
TAMARA KEITH, BYLINE: Whatever story you want to tell about the U.S. economy, you can find some data points to make your case.
U.S. homeownership rates have fallen to their lowest point since 1997, despite the homebuyer tax credit and enduring rock-bottom interest rates. Two years ago on Morning Edition, we profiled two couples who were renting with no regrets. Have they changed their tune?
Here's an update on a member of Congress who became a multinational person. As we reported yesterday, former Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann is Swiss. She became a dual citizen of Switzerland and the U.S. through her husband, Marcus Bachmann, whose parents are Swiss and who recently claimed his Swiss citizenship.
NPR's business news starts with Sony hitting a three-decade low.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
INSKEEP: Sony shares fell to their lowest level since 1980 on Japan's Nikkei stock exchange today. That drop follows yesterday's report that the company suffered a net loss of $5.7 billion for the last fiscal year. The once dominant tech company has fallen behind other industry giants like Samsung and Apple, and has seen especially heavy losses in its TV division. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.