Fed Raises Discount Rate

Posted by & filed under Economic Analysis, Governments & Regulators.

Description:  The Fed raised the rate it charges banks for emergency loans by a quarter percentage point. WSJ’s Justin Lahart breaks down what it means in an interview with Simon Constable. Source: Marketwatch – video report   Date: 02/18/2010 Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/video/asset/news-hub-fed-raises-discount-rate/62D44209-3F0C-458C-9BF9-6A58762E0ABD Questions for discussion: Summarize the reasons given in the report for a gradual increase… Read more »

A close look at the dollar’s power

Posted by & filed under Economic Analysis.

Description:  The dollar has come back against the euro recently but readers of ‘The Buzz’ still see a weak greenback in the future. Source: CNNMoney – video report   Date: 02/17/2010  Link: http://money.cnn.com/video/news/2010/02/17/n_bz_dollar_gold_oil_euro.cnnmoney/ Questions for discussion: Summarize the assessment for the future value of the US dollar against other currencies and commodities. Do you agree… Read more »

Broker? Adviser? And What’s the Difference?

Posted by & filed under Industry Analysis.

Description: THE Great Recession has intensified a long-running debate: who is better able to look out for your money, a broker or an independent adviser? Now that the shock of last year’s losses has worn off, many investors are reconsidering what their financial professionals did — or failed to do — for them. At the… Read more »

Sears agrees to sell Craftsman tools at Ace Hardware

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis, Growth & Valuation.

Description:   Sears Holdings Corp. has agreed to sell its popular Craftsman tool brand through Ace Hardware stores, as the company turns again to outsiders to help grow its sales. Source: Marketwatch.com Date: 02/20/2010 Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/sears-agrees-to-sell-craftsman-tools-at-ace-hardware-2010-02-20 Questions for discussion: Do you think this strategy is sound for both firms? What alternative strategies are available to Sears and… Read more »

GM’s chief gets $9 million

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis, Management Issues.

Description:  General Motors chairman and chief executive, Ed Whitacre, Jr. will receive a compensation package worth $9 million, the automaker said Friday. Source: CNNMoney.com Date: 02/19/2010 Link: http://money.cnn.com/2010/02/19/news/companies/GM_salary/index.htm Questions for discussion: Do you believe this compensation is appropriate in light of GM’s history and connection to TARP?  Do you believe there can be negative reaction… Read more »

Blackstone CEO: Banks feel beat up

Posted by & filed under Governments & Regulators, Industry Analysis.

Description:  Fortune’s Leigh Gallagher discusses Steve Schwarzman’s op-ed piece and explains why banks are blamed for the financial crisis. Source: CNNMoney – video report   Date: 02/12/2010 Link: http://money.cnn.com/video/fortune/2010/02/12/f_sl_blackstone_banks.fortune/ Questions for discussion: Do you agree with the statement that “bank lending fuels private equity deals? Explain your answer. Do you believe proposed legislation will harm… Read more »

The downside to the global economy

Posted by & filed under Economic Analysis, Governments & Regulators.

Description:  Fortune editors explain how problems in places like Dubai and Greece are affecting U.S. markets. Source: CNNMoney – video report   Date: 02/10/2010 Link: http://money.cnn.com/video/fortune/2010/02/10/f_sl_greece_euro.fortune/ Questions for discussion: Summarize the impact that global debt levels and deleveraging may have on domestic as well as international investing strategies? What strategy would you advise – particularly… Read more »

Junkyard treasure:High-yield bonds saved from the scrapheap

Posted by & filed under Market Analysis.

Description: High-yield corporate bonds are being priced as if few of these companies are going out of business, evidence that income-seeking investors are increasingly accepting the greater risks attached to low-rated debt. Source: Marketwatch.com Date: 02/14/2010 Link:  http://www.marketwatch.com/story/high-yield-bonds-show-investors-the-money-2010-02-12 Questions for discussion: Summarize the current market conditions for corporate bonds. How should financial managers deal with… Read more »

Goldman Sachs’s Spilker, Overseer of $871 Billion, Exits Firm

Posted by & filed under Management Issues.

Description:   Goldman Sachs Group Inc. investment management co-head Marc Spilker is leaving the firm after two decades and will be replaced by a predecessor. Source: Bloomberg.com Date: 02/13/2010 Link: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601103&sid=aheYV90R253M Questions for discussion: How do you think this managerial change might affect investment strategies at the firm? How might investors react?

Volcker says must let big financial firms fail

Posted by & filed under Governments & Regulators.

Description: Large financial institutions that engage in speculative activities for profit should be allowed to fail if they get in trouble, White House advisor Paul Volcker said on Sunday. Source: Reuters.com Date: 02/014/2010 Link:  http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN1414676420100214?type=marketsNews Questions for discussion:  Do you agree with Paul Volcker’s argument? Explain your answer. What would the impact be on risk… Read more »