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1 Confirmed Dead in Orlando Shooting; U.S. Jobless Rate at 10.2%; G- 20 Summit in Scotland Looks for Exit

Aired November 6, 2009 - 14:00:00   ET


ADRIAN FINIGHAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: And they call this a recovery, the U.S. jobless rate hits double digits for the first time in 26 years.

The world's top money men are looking for the way forward. We join Egypt's finance minister at the G-20 summit in Scotland.

And tough talk from British Airways as it reports a deep loss.


: This has got to be turned around. This business is not sustainable and must be returned to profitability.


FINIGHAN: Hello, I'm Adrian Finighan, in for Richard Quest. This is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.

Hello, we'll get to those job numbers in just a moment. But first, as you've been hearing on CNN, emergency personnel are responding right now to a multiple killing -- or at least what was at first thought to be a multiple killing at a Florida office building. A CNN affiliate in Orlando reports now that one person is dead and seven are injured.

Now the 16-story...


FINIGHAN: ... conduct a floor-by-floor investigation. An Orlando police spokeswoman identified the suspect in this shooting as a man called Jason Rodriguez, who used to work in the building, police say that he, at the moment, is still at large. That is an ongoing situation and we'll keep you up-to-date if there are any developments from Orlando, you'll hear about them first here on CNN.

So it's the worst jobless rate in a generation. U.S. unemployment is now running at 10.2 percent, the first time that the jobless rate has been in double digits since April 1983. And here you can see just how far unemployment has soared over the last year. In November 2008, the jobless rate stood at 6.8 percent, one year later, it's over that 10 percent threshold.

Now the spike is much worse than expected, economists have forecast that the rate would increase, but suggest 9.9 percent. According to the Labor Department, there was a net loss of 190,000 jobs in October, and that's still the smallest drop in more than a year.

Double digit employment, though, comes after the release of upbeat numbers last week, between July and September, the U.S. economy grew by 3.5 percent. Well, U.S. President Barack Obama says the new figures are a reminder of the challenges still facing the U.S. economy.

He vowed to do all he can to get America back on its feet.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I would also like to announce that I just signed into law a bill that will help grow our economy, save and create new jobs, and provide relief to struggling families and businesses. The need for such a measure was made clear by the jobs report that we received this morning. Although we lost fewer jobs than we did last month, our unemployment rate climbed to over 10 percent, a sobering number that underscores the economic challenges that lie ahead.


FINIGHAN: Well, this unemployment data underlines why so many people are reluctant to say that the U.S. is out of recession. Let's get more now from CNN's Susan Lisovicz, who today is at a job center in New York.

Try telling people there, Susan, that the economy is on its way back, hey?

SUSAN LISOVICZ, CNN FINANCIAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, there is definitely a disconnect between these numbers that we've been talking about, the U.S. economy growing, what is also growing is the unemployment rate with the latest jobs report today.

And you know, if you look inside that report, you know, there are several numbers that should be pointed out, 10.2 percent is a high unemployment rate, if you factor in underemployment, you're looking at 17.5 percent. These are people who can't find full-time work and maybe take part-time work just to get by. We're talking about 26 million Americans between them.

Another number that is startling, Adrian, is the amount of time it now takes for Americans on average to find work. It's approaching seven months. Somebody who knows that first hand and then some is Sherry Clark.

Sherry, hi.

SHERRY CLARK, JOB SEEKER: Hi, how are you?

LISOVICZ: How long have you been out of work?

CLARK: Approximately a year-and-a-half now.

LISOVICZ: How are you feeling about your prospects?

CLARK: It has begun -- it's beginning to be very stressful.

LISOVICZ: But you have actually had some interviews in recent days.

CLARK: Yes. Yes, I had an interview a couple of weeks ago. It looked like it was promising but it didn't happen.

LISOVICZ: OK. At the last minute, somebody was said to be...

CLARK: That had more education than myself.

LISOVICZ: And that is what is interesting, you have been working as an office manager for 20 years, that would be a real plus. What are you finding?

CLARK: Now they're not just looking for the experience, they're looking for more education. Education is the key, because it's so competitive now, so now they're looking for people with masters and bachelors, even though I've been doing it for 20 years now, that doesn't count for nothing right now. Education is the key.

LISOVICZ: Right. And so you're nervous because what is happening with your unemployment benefits.

CLARK: Well, right now we have four weeks left. Four weeks and I still haven't found employment. I'm still searching.

LISOVICZ: But, you know, Adrian, Sherry has been here religiously working with counselors, and in fact, she actually right now is in the process of having her resume screened for a prospective job. We're certainly keeping our fingers crossed that it all works out.

But interestingly enough, Adrian, just yesterday, on Thursday, the U.S. Congress voted overwhelmingly to extend emergency unemployment benefits for a third time. So that certainly may come very crucial for people like Sherry Clark.

Back to you, Adrian.

FINIGHAN: Yes, absolutely. You've got to feel for Sherry that in this day and age, it seems that experience counts for very little. You know that you can be qualified to the hilt, but still not know how to do the job. And yet someone with Sherry's experience there, that really is awful. But I suppose -- I mean, let's try to see something positive in this, Susan.

Unemployment is a lagging indicator, isn't it? It has got to get better sometime soon.

LISOVICZ: That's right. And you know what, even though we see this uptick in numbers, which is, you know, worse than expected, counselors here tell me that they are beginning to see signs of movement. One of the areas where they see promise is temporary work.

As you know, oftentimes in a recession, employers may not want to commit to a full-time job. They don't want to pay the benefits. They haven't seen enough activity picking up. So they might do temporary workers, and we have seen that.

They're also telling me that they are seeing areas of growth. We've talked about it many times, health care, unfortunately also in the security business, crime is a problem. When the economy is bad, you often see an uptick in all sorts of crime. And they're seeing security businesses, for instance, corrections, things like that.

There are jobs out there. If you, you know, can target your skills, or if you're willing to be open-minded and flexible, it may not be the perfect job, it may not be the job that you wanted, but if it's a job, that's pretty good in this recession right now -- Adrian.

FINIGHAN: Absolutely. Susan, many thanks, indeed. Susan Lisovicz there at a job center in New York.

Well, let's see how those job figures are affecting the markets right now. Here's a look at the Big Board. The Dow, well, it was down right after the figures came out. It's back in positive territory right now, but only just, about 3.5 points higher at 10,008 as we speak. We'll have more market analysis and indeed we'll get deeper into what those figures tell us about the state of the economy in the next 15, 20 minutes or so here on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.

Right now, though, let's get you up-to-date with what else is happening in the world. CNN's Max Foster joins us live from the London newsroom.

MAX FOSTER, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Adrian, there has been another mass shooting in the U.S. At least one person is reported dead and seven injured at a shooting at an Orlando, Florida, office building. Police have identified the suspect as a man who used to work in the building. He is still at large.

Hours before a shooting rampage at Fort Hood in Texas, surveillance video shows the suspect calmly shopping in a store. Major Nidal Malik Hasan, an Army psychiatrist, allegedly opened fire on his comrades on Thursday afternoon. When the rampage was over, 13 people were dead and 3 more wounded. Hasan was set to deploy to Iraq or Afghanistan. And family members say the devout Muslim wanted out of the military. He also reportedly endured harassment over his faith.

In what was billed as a major speech on Afghanistan today, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said the country, quote, "cannot, must not, and will not walk away from its mission." Mr. Brown insisted that the Afghan president, Hamid Karzai, must do more to fight corruption.

NATO says two U.S. soldiers are missing in Afghanistan. The two paratroopers from the U.S. 82nd Airborne Division disappeared on Wednesday whilst on a routine resupply mission in western Afghanistan. More than two dozen NATO and Afghan forces have been reportedly been wounded in the search for the missing American soldiers.

Those are the headlines, Adrian, back to you.

FINIGHAN: Many thanks, indeed, Max. Let's take a look at what happened on the markets here in Europe. We ended the week on a fairly flat note, London's FTSE, perhaps the best performer, boosted by bank shares and British Airways. We'll tell you more about British Airways in a while.

Over in Paris, the CAC 40 ended just below the line, but Frankfurt's Xetra DAX, Zurich's SMI ended the day around a 0.1 percent higher. Well, here is how the stock markets performed across the week. The Paris CAC 40 making solid gains. Frankfurt's Xetra DAX having a pretty lackluster week. But all in all, the markets were in the plus column.

So it has been a pretty busy week when you think about it. We've had interest rates, earnings, those all important jobs figures out. Let's take it all apart now. Bob Parker, vice chairman of Credit Suisse Asset Management is here to give us his perspective on what has been happening on the economic front.

And as you came in, Bob, you said, well, we'll be over two hours then. There is so much to talk about. First of all, we've got to start with those unemployment figures then, and at 26-year-high. But unemployment, as I was saying to Susan, a lagging indicator.

BOB PARKER, VICE CHAIRMAN, CREDIT SUISSE ASSET MANAGEMENT: It's very much a lagging indicator. And unfortunately I think the unemployment rate announced today at 10.2 percent probably stays close to this level for another six to seven months. Having said that, as we go into the second half of 2010, I do think we're going to see a slow, steady improvement in the unemployment numbers.

But having said that, by the end of 2010, we may still be looking at 8 to 9 percent unemployment in the U.S.

FINIGHAN: The dollar dipped further today, traders reckoning that unemployment -- the high rate of unemployment will mean that the Fed will have to keep interest rates at their historic lows for some time to come here. And of course, low interest rates have partly fueled the stock market rally that we've seen.

What is your feeling on stocks at the moment? Are they overvalued as far as -- you know, when you consider earnings prospects?

PARKER: Well, we've obviously had a very significant rally since the low point, which was the 9th of March this year. Our view is we go through now a period of consolidation, possibly a small correction which may last until January or February 2010. In that consolidation period, I think you're going to see probably under-leveraged high dividend deep value stocks outperform what has been a rally over the last six months, which has been led by small cap emerging markets.

So it's going to be a period of consolidation.

FINIGHAN: British Airways today announced a record earnings loss, and yet its shares rose, what, over 6.5 percent. RBS as well after its third- quarter loss of 1.8 billion pounds, it was up 5 percent. How do you explain anomalies like that?

PARKER: Well, I think you have to look at what are investor expectations? And you know, equity markets obviously discount forward. And the share price reaction might have looked very odd in response to these very poor numbers.

But what the markets are saying is that these are probably the worst numbers. In the case of RBS, yes, there will be further write-downs. I think it will be, as the company says itself, 2011 before we see actually strong profitability and a successful restructuring completed at RBS.

FINIGHAN: All right. So yesterday the ECB and the Bank of England left interest rates on hold, at those low levels we were talking about. But the Bank of England also continued with its policy of quantitative easing, injecting another 50 -- 25 billion pounds into the U.K. economy. Does the economy need it?

PARKER: I think the answer is -- really is yes, and in fact, there was a big debate as to whether they should have injected 50 billion pounds rather than 25 billion. And I think the picture on the U.K. economy is very clear, which is that whereas economies like France, Germany, Japan all came out of recession in the second quarter, America came out of recession in the third quarter, the U.K. economy is a very clear laggard.

And amongst the major developed economies, it's probably the weakest.

FINIGHAN: I want to ask you about the G-20. We'll be talking to Richard live in Scotland in just a moment. He's there with the G-20 finance ministers and central bankers ahead of their meeting. U.K. Chancellor Alistair Darling says ahead of that meeting the G-20 nations should develop a way to tackle, quote, "catastrophic asset price bubbles," as the recovery takes hold, he is echoing what the IMF has said, of course.

PARKER: Absolutely.

FINIGHAN: I mean, what does it mean? And is he right?

PARKER: Well, one thing, I don't like to use the word "guarantee" much in my business. But one thing I can say is that whenever you have a bubble, whether it's real estate, whether it's equity markets, whether it's other asset classes like commodities, I can guarantee always those bubbles will burst.

And obviously when you have a bubble bursting, it has extraordinarily difficult economic consequences. And we've seen, you know, the financial crisis over the last year has been a classic a bubble bursting.

And Alistair Darling is quite right to say the G-20 needs to focus on how to address future asset class bubbles.

FINIGHAN: Bob, always a joy to talk to you, many thanks indeed, for coming in...

PARKER: Thank you.

FINIGHAN: ... and wrapping up the week for us. Bob Parker, the vice chairman of Credit Suisse Asset Management.

PARKER: Well, that U.S. jobless rate will, of course, give the world's top money men plenty of food for thought this weekend as they put their heads together in Scotland and, as I said, Richard Quest is there.

RICHARD QUEST, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Adrian, that is an understatement as the meetings get under way in the first formal dinner begins. The big talking point, how to keep the recovery moving forward but not do more harm than good? I'll be here in Scotland after the break.


FINIGHAN: Now jobs, the global economy, trade, and climate change, it's a hefty agenda for the world's top finance ministers who are meeting in St. Andrew's in Scotland. And the man who is normally sitting here and whose name is up there behind me, Richard Quest, is covering the G-20 summit. He is with us now live -- Richard.

QUEST: And I am extremely envious of you tonight, Adrian. It's warm in your studio, cold, miserable, damp and wet here in Scotland on this Friday night. And that's probably just about the mood for many of the G-20 finance ministers.

The reality of the situation is that many of them here are still facing economies mired in deep trouble, recoveries far from being sustainable without the billions of dollars of economic, fiscal, and monetary support, and worried about exit strategies that will cause even more damage and possibly push into double dip recessions.

It's not surprising that when I sat down with Dr. Yousef Boutros- Ghali, the Egyptian finance minister and a leading minister within the IMF, it was clear today's and this weekend's G-20 had much on their plate.


YOUSEF BOUTROS-GHALI, EGYPTIAN FINANCE MINISTER: I remember when we fell into the hole how we fell all over each other, and the policies of, A, harm, B -- B-something, to C, et cetera. Now we want to avoid this on the way out because in exiting from this hole, we can harm each other.

QUEST: But at the one extreme of the G-20, you have Australia now growing at three times the rate expected, and raising interest rates, already tightening. Then you have the U.S. still in recession -- sorry, the U.K. still in recession, and the U.S. with horrible unemployment numbers. When they sit down around the table, what is there to discuss?

BOUTROS-GHALI: Well, it is how does -- I don't think they have done that, and I don't think not -- at least not to my knowledge, Australia did not consult with the rest of the group on how it gets out, and is it time to tighten or should they let it loose a little bit longer. This is what it is about now. And that's going to be the very tricky part.

When there is a fire, everybody agrees you have to pour water. Now there is no fire anymore, we have to rebuild the place. And we have to do it in a consistent way, not synchronically, we don't necessarily have to do all of us the same thing at the same time.

QUEST: You're talking now about still dealing with the immediate crisis in terms of coming out of it with the exit strategy.

BOUTROS-GHALI: Right. This is a medium-term affair.

QUEST: But the G-20 is taking on board its agenda much greater issues of structural imbalances and long-term development goals.

BOUTROS-GHALI: Well, look, you can't look at getting out of this mess without having an eye on what got us into it in the first place. And these were structural imbalances. So unless you have an eye on them, you're not going to fix them tomorrow.

But you want to make sure that while you get out of the mess we're in, you don't make your structural imbalances worse, like, for example, some countries returning to high export rates at the expense of other countries, or other countries returning to high spending patterns at the expense of other countries.

You want to do it in a way that addresses the structural imbalances of the medium term.

QUEST: Is there anything that's going to come out of this meeting?

BOUTROS-GHALI: Typically nothing clear comes out of these meetings. What does come out of these meetings is consultations. You sit and you talk to your colleague and you consult with him. And we're doing this and we're doing that, et cetera.

This is the crucial part. And I don't think in the history of the post-Bretton Woods agreement, from 1944 until today, apart from the G-7, G- 8 starting in the mid-'70s, there was ever a grouping of ministers representing that many countries sitting around the table regularly at least twice a year, and discussing what -- if they talked about the weather, it's an improvement on the management of the planet.


QUEST: And tonight in Scotland, the British finance minister, Alistair Darling, is going to remind everyone there can be no room for complacency amongst other G-20 members, a clear reference to the fact some are growing very fast and some still have a long way to go to get out of the economic woods -- Adrian.

FINIGHAN: Richard, it's a working weekend for you. I know you're back in the studio on Monday, but there will be plenty of coverage on Monday's show, won't there, of what happens at the G-20.

QUEST: Absolutely. Once the communique comes out tomorrow, we will be all over it like a cheap suit, try and get as many interviews as we can and to here the views of finance ministers on Monday.

FINIGHAN: All right. Richard, many thanks, indeed. We'll see you on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS on Monday here on CNN.

Right now we're going to take you to Orlando, you'll remember at the top of the show we were telling you about that multiple shooting that happened earlier today at a Florida office building. Now a CNN affiliate in Orlando was reporting that at least one person is dead and seven are injured. The 16-story Gateway Center building in Orlando, Florida, is under lock-down at the moment. Police are conducting a floor-by-floor investigation.

Now the police are looking for Jason Rodriguez, a man who used to work in the building, they say he is still at large. Here is the mayor now of Orlando talking to the press.

MAYOR BUDDY DYER, ORLANDO, FLORIDA : ... secondly this was a model response by the Orlando Police Department and their supporting law enforcement agencies and the Orlando Fire Department.

The gunman has been apprehended, so the community is safe. That's the important thing to know now. OPD responded within a minute of the 911 call and immediately on the scene.

A lot of people have been impacted, but the OPD and our residents have been extremely cooperative. And this was really a model of how to respond to an incident like this. I want to turn it over to...


QUESTION: Are there any other fatalities here?

CHIEF VAL DEMINGS, ORLANDO, FLORIDA, POLICE: Well, we have five that were victims, shooting victims. We have one that started having chest pains. And we do have one confirmed death.


DEMINGS: You know, it's still a lot of details that we're sorting through right now. It's been such a tragedy to occur, especially after the shooting that occurred in Texas yesterday.

Still a lot of details we need to sort through, but we're proud to say that our SWAT team has apprehended the suspect. He was located at his mother's residence and he is in custody.

QUESTION: Can you tell us about that apprehension? How did it go down?

DEMINGS: Well, we received information that he may be in the area of his mother's residence. We sent some officers out there, sent our SWAT team out there. They confirmed.

We of course had intelligence information on him. They were able to see him through the window and asked him to come out. He did. He was arrested without incident.


DEMINGS: We have not heard any details like that. They just arrested him, so I'm sure there's a lot more information that will be coming in.

QUESTION: Chief, we know that this guy was a former employee. Can we talk about the motive of why he did this?

DEMINGS: You know, I really wish I knew the motive. Our investigators are going to be working around the clock to find out exactly why he would do what he did today. There's still a lot of details that we're going to have to sort through.


DEMINGS: We have not identified the person that's dead, but there is one confirmed fatality.

QUESTION: After talking to people in the building today, can you kind of give us an overview of what might have transpired that you know at this point?

DEMINGS: Well, around 11:00 today, we received a call of an active shooter at the facility behind us. Our units responded, as the mayor said. They arrived within a minute, which is a very quick response.

Of course, their first concern is the preservation of life and to rescue those who may be injured. They began a building search of each of the floors. I believe it's 18 floors within the building, and were just trying to locate exactly where the shooting occurred, what was the conversation was before that, trying to talk to building security to get their information. And the investigation continues.

QUESTION: Chief, what was his demeanor? Did he seem like he might have been whacked out? Was he distraught? What was the suspected gunman's demeanor when your troops arrived?

DEMINGS: Our detectives are with -- the officers did not make contact with the gunman when we initially responded. The information that we were receiving about the shooter's demeanor is coming from witnesses that detectives are in the process of debriefing right now.

QUESTION: Do you know, did he just walk in on the first floor and just start to shoot, or did he go to the location of the business?

DEMINGS: We're talking to security to find out exactly how that occurred.

QUESTION: Did security try to stop him?

QUESTION: What kind of security actually is in this building?

DEMINGS: We don't know yet, unfortunately.

QUESTION: Was it his mom who gave him up, or was there another person who gave him up? Or was this just keen police work?

DEMINGS: The call came in, and you know our intelligence units have been out here from the very beginning since 11:00 trying to identify who he is, was able to do that. Received vehicle information, started looking for his vehicle, started working on information from his cell phone. And through all of that, along with crime line tips that started coming in, we were able to find out his location and subsequently arrest him.

QUESTION: Has the police department started to look into his past at this point?

DEMINGS: Of course.

QUESTION: Does he have any priors?

DEMINGS: Yes, we are. We're looking into everything. I have not been briefed by our intelligence officers as of yet.

QUESTION: And are you confident, Chief, that he acted alone?

DEMINGS: We are confident of that at this point because the brief intelligence that I am aware of is that it was one lone gunman.

QUESTION: Clarify: one fatality and five wounded people?

DEMINGS: That's correct, one fatality, five wounded.

QUESTION: And the suspect himself, any wounds of any type.

DEMINGS: Not to my knowledge.


DEMINGS: Any more information, Chief, the fire department can add about the condition of the victim?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everybody we have talked to and double checked through the hospital is stable. The ones that were transported, the shooting victims. We also had one medical condition related to the incident from the evacuation has been treated and is also in stable condition.

Of course, as Chief Demings says, we had one what we call no code, no vital. When the crews rapidly went in, under the protection of OPD, because the building was not secured, we rapidly went in, found any patients. If they have they were workable in this case, we got them out of the building and got them immediately treated and sent to the hospital.

The medical records for the paramedics for the fire department were here on the scene to assist us in actually making sure that everything went well. So at this point, everybody is stable except for the one no code, no vitals.

QUESTION: And we have heard some of the names of who might have been dead. When are we going to actually (OFF-MIKE)?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, that will come through Chief Demings...


DEMINGS: No, there have not been any notifications. You can imagine how family members feel who have relatives who are working in this building. The person has not been identified, nor have any notifications been made to the family.

I do want to mention the response not only from the Orlando Police Department, but the Orange County Sheriff's Office. And I believe every federal, state and local agency responded and came to our aid today. So, it has been a long day, but it was a wonderful collaborative effort to identify the suspect and arrest him.


QUESTION: Chief Demings, the people who are evacuated, are they now cleared to go home? Or what's their situation that you've taken them out?

DEMINGS: Our officers are in the process for those person who we believe were not related at all, did not witness anything, did not hear anything, we are in the process of trying to release them.

QUESTION: Can you tell us where the mother's house is?

DEMINGS: She lives in an apartment complex out off of Curry Ford Road. I don't know the exact address out there, but yes...

QUESTION: Did she call police by any chance? Because I know sometimes in desperate situations like this, relatives will turn relatives in.

DEMINGS: And she may have. Like I said, we've been receiving calls. She may have...

FINIGHAN: Well, we'll break away from that news conference there -- that impromptu news conference outside the Gateway Center in Orlando. That was Orlando's police chief, Val Demings there, talking about the multiple shooting at the Gateway Center, confirming that there are five gunshot victims. One confirmed fatality and one person hospitalized with chest pains.

She also said that SWAT teams have located the suspect. They were looking for a man called Jason Rodriguez who used to work at the building. They apprehended him at his mother's home nearby. And he was arrested without incident. The police investigation continuing. We'll keep you up- to-date with that developing situation in Orlando, Florida, right here on CNN.

You're with QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, we'll be back in just a moment.


FINIGHAN: Hello again.

Live from London, this is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS from CNN.

I'm Adrian Finighan in for Richard Quest.

So, on the markets today, Wall Street, well, fairly directionless after that worse than expected jobs report that we had today. The jobless rate now at 10.2 percent. That's the worst in 26 years. The U.S. economy shed some 190,000 jobs in October. The Dow Jones up now by 9 points.

So more than seven million people in the U.S. have been laid off in this recession. Some are worrying, as we heard a little earlier, the jobs won't ever come back. Many people now looking, perhaps, to switch career paths to try to get back to work.

Let's bring in Maggie Lake, who's been out getting the story of where some people are turning.

Maggie is live in New York -- hey, Maggie.


That's right. You know, it's such a -- it's such a difference in opinion, once again, from Wall Street and Main Street. Wall Street is actually taking this new -- news in stride, because they feel like maybe it's the beginning of the end of the bad news -- the rate -- the unemployment rate shot up worse than expected, so maybe we're closer to turning the corner. And that's why we're seeing these sort of, you know, modest gains today.

But I -- but when we went out talking to people, that is certainly not the feeling. There are an awful lot of people that are really concerned about their future. And we went out to a community college. That's where a lot of these people are flocking. Community colleges around the U.S. are seeing their enrollment soar as people try to figure out how to navigate this sort of new jobs picture.



LAKE (voice-over): Charles Morro is 33 years old and gearing up for one of the scariest prospects imaginable -- a major career change. He was laid off from his job running I.T. networks and is now working toward a degree in health care at New Jersey's Brookdale Community College.

MORRO: And I thought about if I stayed in computers, so what happens if I get another computer job and six months from now, I get laid off again?

I'll be back to square one again. So I thought about maybe taking a couple of steps back.

LAKE: Charles doesn't show up I the jobless statistics. He still has part-time work coming in, but he is among the growing ranks of the underemployed -- people forced to take less senior positions for lower pay and fewer hours, many of whom are now flocking to community colleges like Brookdale.

(on camera): The students you expect to see on this campus are young, in their 20s, studying for their undergraduate degree. But increasingly, the student population is older -- people who are working or unemployed, looking to retrain, to try to get a leg up in this very tough job market.

(voice-over): Brookdale's acting president, Margaret McMenamin, says the trends are trouble.

MARGARET MCMENAMIN, ACTING PRESIDENT, BROOKDALE COLLEGE: We see people with bachelor's degrees who are coming back to get an associate's degree in perhaps a -- a job that they -- they wouldn't have considered in the past. So we do have a lot of underemployed people.

LAKE: People like Beverly Harris. She still has a job in the hotel industry, but her hours are being slashed. She's no longer full-time and she fears the worst.

BEVERLY HARRIS, BROOKDALE COLLEGE STUDENT: The writing is on the wall. I mean they're laying people off. Every -- every Monday you come in, you know, there are e-mails out and it's, this person is no longer with us. It's -- it's bad.

LAKE: So Beverly is also gearing up for a big career move.

HARRIS: I started in September which -- hotel management/radiology. The medical field is -- is pretty stable right now. I think it's more stable right now than the hotel industry, because no one is traveling.

LAKE: College officials say job security and job availability are big factors in how students choose their majors.

MCMENAMIN: Health care is -- it doesn't matter where you go, there are jobs in health care. Number two, education. There are a lot of people coming in, looking for jobs in education, because that's where the jobs are.

LAKE: Jobs that give workers another chance at a decent career.

MORRO: And I know this is basically my last shot at -- if I don't make it now, then it's going to be difficult to get back up to where I need to be. So I know I've got to make it count.

LAKE: High stakes and agonizing career choices on college campuses across the U.S.


LAKE: And, Adrian, I have to tell you, my heart really went out to these people. They are really making some really difficult sacrifices to try to do it. But you've got to root for them. They sort of see the writing on the wall. They're going out there. They're retraining. They're doing everything people say they should do. They're certainly risk takers. Let's hope they make it.

But this is the reason -- these are the people that are out there -- and why officials here are reluctant to say that this recession is over, because it's so tough for so many people still.

FINIGHAN: What do they say?

Fortune favors the brave. Let's hope it -- it comes off for them.

LAKE: Yes.

FINIGHAN: Maggie, many thanks.

Have a great weekend.

Maggie Lake live in New York.

Now, tough talk from the boss of British Airways. We'll tell you how he plans to turn the company around and not all his staff are going to like it.


FINIGHAN: Welcome back.

Before we move on, I just wanted to let you know about another story that's developing. After the shooting yesterday, the multiple shooting at Fort Hood in Texas, where 13 people lost their lives, there's been a moment of silence that was held in the last few minutes.

We'll bring you more details of -- of that story, the developments on that story, and, of course, the multiple shootings of Florida, in the I Desk at the top of the hour here on CNN.

Now, a first half (ph) loss for the first time. British Airways is reporting a pretax loss of $345 million. It's the worst summertime results in its history, covering a period which is usually quite busy. But the news didn't faze investors. In fact, B.A.'s shares were the biggest gainer on London's FTSE 100 today. They ended the session up some 6.7 percent. Investors were impressed by signals that things aren't going to get any worse and by the company's cost-cutting plans. Those plans include axing 3,000 staff by March next year and cutting the number of seats available this winter.

CEO Willie Walsh told CNN's Jim Boulden that these measures will help the airline through the aviation recession.


WILLIE WALSH, CEO, BRITISH AIRWAYS: I think we're on track to make the changes that we've identified. I think the actions that we've taken to address this downturn have been absolutely right. The financial performance is poor, but I think the changes that we've made and the program of change that we have to implement will address this challenge.

But it's -- it's a huge challenge. It's, by far, the most difficult period in the history of the airline industry.

JIM BOULDEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: In the same six months last year, you made a bit of a profit.

WALSH: Um-hmm.

BOULDEN: Summer is obviously the most important time for an airline and you lost a heck of a lot of money.

WALSH: Um-hmm. You know, there's no question, this year is a much tougher year than last year. And I think the evidence of that is in the figures that IAT (ph) are projecting for the year, which was mentioned -- (END VIDEO TAPE)

FINIGHAN: That was -- oh, I'm afraid we're going to have to -- to interrupt Willie Walsh there, that -- that interview with the CEO of British Airways, because we have another development on the -- the shootings -- yesterday's shootings at Fort Hood Army Base in Texas.

You can see Willie Walsh, the interview, online at

But a news conference is underway at Fort Hood in Texas.

Let's listen in.


FINIGHAN: Well, that was John McHugh, the U.S. under secretary there, speaking at Fort Hood in Texas, along with General George Casey, who is the -- the Army chief of staff. But also there, John Rossi, the deputy commander at Fort Hood, speaking after that multiple shooting yesterday in which 15 people were killed. Of course, another 30 people were wounded in that shooting. Twenty-eight of them required hospitalization and surgery. All of them now in a stable condition, it's been reported.

And President Obama, in remarks earlier today, cautioned against jumping to conclusions about what had triggered what he called "one of the worst mass shootings ever to take place on an American military base."

That's a press conference still underway. We'll wrap it all up for you and bring you full details of what was -- what was said in just a moment.

That's it for QUEST MEANS BUSINESS for this week in London.

I'm Adrian Finighan.

Right now, let's get the latest from the I Desk and Colleen McEdwards.