On the economic front, signs that the worst may be over

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We are finally seeing signs that our moribund economy might be starting to heal. This month, consumer confidence jumped more than forecast, stocks rose, mortgage rates dropped and Americans indicated more jobs could soon be available. To be sure, it's still a bit early to start popping open the champagne bottles. In fact, both President Obama and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke this week predicted that the road back to prosperity remains a long one. But after so many months of discouraging news, it's nice to see some encouraging signs. Better still, it appears that the long-term care sector is emerging largely unharmed.

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