REGIONS: Where the Boom Is Brightest

AS bright as the holiday lights decorating crowded stores, the business indicators make it clearer every week that the economy is now in a boom. Auto demand is so high that some plants will remain open during part of Christmas week, even though the companies will have to pay triple-time wages. American industry in October produced 9% more than a year ago. Corporate profits after taxes for the third quarter rose 18%. Housing starts are running at a record 2,400,000.

What counts for most executives and wage earners, though, is not the...

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