Real Story: Economic Realities

Washington Group's CEO bucks the day's trend of fretting over growth prospects.
Publish date:

On a day when worries about economy growth hit major averages, Stephen Hanks, CEO of Washington Group International


told Aaron Task a much more upbeat story on Tuesday's

Real Story podcast.

Washington Group, a major construction and engineering firm, is seeing "tremendous growth" in all six of its market segments, says Hanks, citing notable opportunities in the energy market. "We've very excited." (The entire interview can be seen

here on TV.)

The CEO's remarks came on a day when the



S&P 500

each fell 0.6% and the

Nasdaq Composite

lost 0.7%, a decline paced by economically sensitive stocks such as


(DD) - Get Report



(IR) - Get Report



(MSFT) - Get Report



(C) - Get Report


The selloff followed a weaker-than-expected report on consumer confidence, as well as a lackluster earnings report from homebuilder


(LEN) - Get Report

, which also backed off the earnings target it had provided in January.

Task's second guest,

real estate reporter Nick Yulico, discussed the implications of Lennar's results as well as Standard & Poor's report that home prices fell 0.2% in January in the 20 largest metro areas of the country, based on the S&P Case-Shiller Index.

Yulico observed there may be "too much data" about housing but the figure that matters most, inventories, is on the rise in both the recent existing and new-home-sales data.

In the remainder of the podcast, Task addresses the day's other corporate news, noting many of the session's stock-specific stories were big gainers, including


(GME) - Get Report





FuelCell Energy

(FCEL) - Get Report


In addition, "The Real Story" host previewed Wednesday's congressional testimony by Ben Bernanke, recalling the

Federal Reserve

chairman has recently had a "salutary effect" on stocks when he speaks.


here to listen to the entire podcast.