World Growth Nearly Halts

Total global economic growth is expected to grind to a near halt--just 0.5% this year, the lowest rate since World War II, the International Monetary Fund announced today. Just three months ago, the IMF was forecasting annual growth of 2.2%. That was then. Now, at estimated 51 million jobs could be lost in 2009, according to the International Labour Organization. On the positive side, stocks advanced on hopes that President Obama's "bad bank" plan will be established. Wells Fargo and Citigroup both rose double-digits.