From Reuters.com

Reuters.com changes to better service you, our audience

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The global economic crisis is the biggest story in modern times and a record audience is turning to Reuters for information you can trust. I share with you some changes we’ve brought to Reuters.com and Reuters.co.uk to help you understand the financial turmoil and benefit from the expertise of our 2,550 journalists around the globe. You’ll notice more headlines from our financial correspondents and more video interviews with business newsmakers. We’ve added a new Economy section, increased our coverage of regulation and will soon relaunch our small business and environment pages.

Our Great Debate section has added more financial commentary from our growing team of Reuters columnists, with technology expert Eric Auchard among the writers joining James Saft, John Kemp and Bernd Debusmann. We also offer more graphics for better insight into the financial markets. And we continue to add specialist blogs, with Hedge Hub providing a place for readers to discuss the hedge fund industry with journalists such as Laurence Fletcher.

Graphic: U.S. Unemployment

Unemployment Rate by State

Peering into the future

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Talk show host Tyra Banks gives a crystal ball to Barack Obama.  REUTERS/Jason Kempin/Warner Bros/Handout

Part of our mission at Reuters.com is to help our readers anticipate what’s around the corner. We do that through expert analysis of complex stories, factboxes laying out possible scenarios for milestone events and insight from columnists such as James Saft.

Now we’re trying out a new tool to help our readers figure out what’s next, and have some fun along the way. It’s a tie-up between our Reuters Lab team and Hubdub, a news prediction site where users compete at predicting the outcomes of   news stories. Hubdub is an example of a news prediction market that quotes prices for the likelihood of an event occurring. You’ll find some links to the theory behind such markets on the Hubdub FAQ . We’re not making any claims for the accuracy of these markets, but we think our readers will find Hubdub an interesting way to participate in the analysis of news events.

Recession? Place your bets

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Surprisingly dismal data on U.S. employment for August has heightened fears of a full-blown recession. To date, the economy has not met the popular definition of recession, two back-to-back quarters of declining GDP. Whether it will meet a more-nuanced definition employed by the National Bureau of Economic Research, the accepted recession arbiter, remains to be seen. What do you think? Place your bet via the Reuters page on Hubdub.com, a news prediction game. The odds shown on the live graph below fluctuate to reflect bets by the Hubdub community. You can let us know what you think of this feature in the comments below. Will the National Bureau of Economic Research announce in 2008 that the U.S. is in recession?

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