Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke appears before the House Financial Services Committee July 18. Economists expect Fed policymakers to consider further steps to boost growth when they meet next week. J. Scott Applewhite/AP hide caption

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A "historically low inventory" of cattle and hogs is driving up meat prices, a trend that's expected to continue next year, USDA economist Richard Volpe says. Justin Lane/EPA/Landov hide caption

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The marble statue of Plato stands in front of the Athens Academy in Athens. The ancient Greek philosopher had his doubts about democracy. Dimitri Messinis/AP hide caption

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Many economists are predicting Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and his fellow policymakers will continue to depress long-term rates. Alex Brandon/AP hide caption

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaks during a press conference in Brussels. John Thys/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke hasn't said whether the central bank will act to further stimulate the economy. Alex Wong/Getty Images hide caption

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Maryland resident Ida Christian, 89, began showing symptoms of Alzheimer's disease in 2009. Her daughter, Geneva Hunter, and granddaughter, Yolanda, decided to take a hands-on approach to Ida's care. Ida lives with Geneva, and Yolanda quit her job to become Ida's daytime caregiver. Kainaz Amaria/NPR hide caption

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Aaron Moore completes a job application at a Los Angeles career fair on Thursday. Job growth has slowed sharply since the winter, the government said Friday. Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images hide caption

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Frank stands outside his home in Glen Allen, Va., which he co-owned with his mother, Ida. The family recently sold the home in order to free up money for Ida's care. Kainaz Amaria/NPR hide caption

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