Business journalist Neil Cavuto isn't quite sure whether it's nature or fate that has made him an optimist, but we suspect it's a combination of both.
In 1997, after beating cancer, Cavuto was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, leading him to quip: "I'm a petri dish for stuff."
Now, at 43, Cavuto refuses to let his illness, which gives him good days and bad days, define him. "It's no fun, but it's not the end of the world." Whether cable viewers appreciate Cavuto's glass-half-full sensibilities is hard to figure.
This much isn't: For the sixth straight month, Cavuto's business news program on Fox News, Your World (4 p.m. ET/1 PT), has been No. 1 in its genre with 681,000 viewers, beating Lou Dobbs' Moneyline on CNN (473,000) and CNBC's Business Center (263,000).
Today, Fox is expected to announce that Cavuto has signed a new deal that'll keep him there for the next five years.
Economically speaking, Cavuto predicts that coming years will be better and that the current scandals affecting the business world are mere blips on the corporate radar screen.
Not that investors aren't angry and don't have reason to be: Some of America's top executives have turned out to be charlatans — "weasels so phony and smarmy that they had it coming to them."
Which is why burned investors and the American public "are saying, 'A pox on all your houses,' " Cavuto says. "They're assuming that good and bad companies alike must all be crooks. It's not the case, but people are so disgusted. It has become this basic lack-of-trust issue."
The cleansing process underway — legal action following disclosures
of financial irregularity — "is painful but it always happens," Cavuto
says, clicking off historical downsizing in the auto and Internet worlds,
to name two. "This is constructive, not destructive. I could be wrong,
but I'm bullish on the country, bullish on the economy and bullish on the
© Copyright 2002 USA TODAY