Posted tagged ‘Stock Market’

Stock Market Takes a Beating…

May 6, 2010

At one point, the Dow Jones was down nearly 1,000 points today.

Luckily for investors, the market has gained back nearly 2/3 of what it at one time had lost today.

Pretty crazy!

From the New York Times:

The market decline on Thursday turned into a freefall, with major indexes tumbling more than 8 percent in afternoon trading. And the euro declined more than 2 percent.

In afternoon trading, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 8.8 percent, or 996 points. The Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index was down 90 points or 7.73 percent, and the Nasdaq was down 175 points, or 7.2 percent.

Investors took in the latest reports in the United States on jobless filings, retail sales and productivity, and then turned their attention back to Europe and the concerns that Greece’s debt problems might spread.

From the Associated Press:

Stocks are plunging as investors give in to fears that Greece’s debt problems will spread and halt the global economic recovery.

The Dow Jones industrial average is down more than 870 points and Treasury prices are soaring. Computer program selling is intensifying the selling.

Jon Stewart Wins Showdown With Jim Cramer

March 13, 2009

Great television last night on Comedy Central!

Comedian Jon Stewart and financial commentator Jim Cramer squared off over the CNBC  network’s reporting of Wall Street ahead of the market meltdown. It was amazing to sit and watch as Cramer, who usually has plenty to say, just sat there and took it. I read somewhere that he was like a kid trying to behave in class so that the teacher would pass them.

I love this analysis of CNN before the showdown last night:

From Reuters:

In recent days on his mock news program “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” the funnyman has taken Cramer, host of CNBC’s “Mad Money,” to task by saying he and CNBC reporters befriended Wall Street executives and former government officials instead of questioning them as journalists should.

Cramer, who offers advice and stock market tips on his CNBC show, has fought back, saying Stewart chose only examples of bad advice Cramer had given.

“I think everyone could come in under criticism. We all should have seen it before,” Cramer said. “Everybody got it wrong. I got a lot of things wrong.”

Average people trusted financial advisors who told them to pour money into market-oriented accounts for the long term, Stewart said, and those people lost their money when Wall Street used those savings to generate short-term profits.

Stewart said financial reporters like Cramer and others on CNBC should have taken the time to uncover financial shenanigans and not have been so quick to trust business executives and government officials.

“The financial news industry is not just guilty of a sin of omission but a sin of commission,” Stewart said.

With financial markets headed upward almost daily in recent years, Cramer said it was hard to believe the march skyward would not continue. “The market was going up for a long time and our real sin, I think, was to think it could continue to go up a lot,” Cramer said.

In the end, the two agreed the financial press corps should refocus on asking hard questions of top executives.

“Maybe we can … start getting back to fundamentals on the reporting, and I can go back to making fart noises and funny faces,” Stewart said.

“I think we can make a deal right here,” Cramer said, and the two shook hands.

2008: Caylee Anthony, Barack Obama and More…

January 2, 2009

First before I go any further in recapping 2008, I want to say thank you to the more than 275,000 people who have taken the time to stop by, read and leave a comment on my site. When I started this blog back in August, I never thought that I would reach 1,000 readers, much less nearly 300,000! It absolutely blows my mind!!!

As most of you already know, I only blog for fun during the spare time I have before work, after work and after the kids have gone to bed at night. I’m not a professional. I don’t break the news, I just pass along stories that I find of interest and hope to spark discussion amongst those who stop by the site. I did get interviewed by MSNBC for an article that came out this week. That was pretty cool, possibly the highlight of my year!

Judging by the number of people who have visited the site, it seems that a lot of you have many of the same interests that I have, and I appreciate you taking the time to read! :) I have enjoyed reading each and every comment that has been left and every email that has been sent to me @ roaddawg33@aol.com. (I read them all and try to respond to all as well) Feel free to drop a line anytime via email or visit me on Twitter, Facebook or MySpace.

I would  have to say that the  most read stories I have posted this year have been about Casey and Caylee Anthony. This has been a truly sad story from the beginning. The loss of a little girl who none of us knew until July who it seems was taken by her own mother. (Yes, I believe that she did it and more than likely her family knew about it at some point in time).

I have said this before, and I’ll say it again: I wish that I never had to cover this story. I wish that Caylee Anthony was still alive, with a loving family, celebrating the holidays. I wish that she had the opportunity to grow up, go to school, get married and start a family of her own. Having a 3 and 1 year old is the greatest experience I’ve had in my life. I can’t understand how anyone would ever harm their own child. It makes ABSOLUTELY NO SENSE TO ME!

Unfortunately, not all people live with the same morals and values in this life. This has been a tragedy and I hope that closure will come with the trial in 2009 and those who were a part of the death of a sweet, innocent young child, will face the consequences that they deserve.

When I started the blog in August, I thought that I would only be covering politics, music and sports. I went to my fair share of concerts including: Carrie Underwood, Kenny Chesney, Brooks & Dunn, Gary Allan, LeeAnn Rhimes, Phil Vassar, Lonestar and Luke Bryan. All were great shows and I can’t wait for another lineup of great acts to come through the Bay Area in 2009. Thanks to KRTY for all the great shows at the Rodeo Club! Bring back Phil Vassar!!!! Best show of ’08.

The Olympics took up quite a bit of my time this summer, watching Michael Phelps run for 8 gold medals in Beijing. Misty May Treanor and Kerri Walsh also dominated Women’s Volleyball again this year (and Misty got her butt slapped by the President) and who can forget the US Dream Team taking home the gold!

The 2008 Presidential race was one for the ages! In the end, Barack Obama defeated his Republican counterpart John McCain in what could be considered a convincing fashion. Saturday Night Live made Tina Fey famous once again for her impressions of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.

There’s been a lot more this year that I just don’t have time to mention: TechCrunch Vs. PR, The Economy and much, much more. You can take a look back through the archives and see what has been discussed. I know there has been a lot! Thanks again to everyone who has taken time out of their day to stop by Kreuzer’s Korner. I’ll try to keep you updated, as always, with the news that I find interesting next year!

Happy New Year Everyone! Here’s to a GREAT 2009!

John Kreuzer

KB Toys Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

December 12, 2008

KB Toys has filed for bankruptcy protection and plans to close its 277 mall-based stores and 114 outlets. In its Chapter 11 filings, the chain blamed “sudden and sharp decline in consumer sales due to macro-economic concerns.”

From the Associated Press:

In another sign of the grim holiday season, KB Toys filed for bankruptcy protection for the second time in four years on Thursday and plans to begin going-out-of business sales at its stores immediately.

The 86-year-old company said in a filing that its debt is “directly attributable to a sudden and sharp decline in consumer sales” because of the poor economy.

That a toy retailer filed for bankruptcy just before Christmas shows how bleak things have become, since such stores make up to half of their sales during the holidays. But analysts expect toy sales this holiday season to be flat or down slightly from last year’s total of $10.4 billion, according to market research firm NPD Group, because consumers are cutting back amid the recession.

In response, toy retailers, including KB Toys, amped up their discounts.

KB Toys had aggressively cut prices to entice cash-strapped shoppers, offering hundreds of toys for $10 or less. It also expanded its value program, which offers deals on new items each week, and offered “Buy 2, Get 1 Free” promotions.

But the deals weren’t enough. In the filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware, KB Toys said that between Oct. 5 and Dec. 8 sales in stores open at least one year, a key retail metric known as same-store sales, fell nearly 20 percent.

The company said it considered its alternatives and decided the most viable way to cover its debt was to begin liquidating its stores via immediate going-out-of-business sales. KB Toys also plans to sell its wholesale distribution business, according to the filing.

Auto Bailout Talks Collapse

December 11, 2008

Bad news for the auto industry. A $14 billion emergency bailout for U.S. automakers collapsed in the Senate Thursday night after the United Auto Workers refused to accede to Republican demands for swift wage cuts.

From the Associated Press:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said he was “terribly disappointed” about the demise of an emerging bipartisan deal to rescue Detroit’s Big Three.

He spoke shortly after Republicans left a closed-door meeting where they balked at giving the automakers federal aid unless their powerful union agreed to slash wages next year to bring them into line with those of Japanese carmakers.

Republican Sen. George V. Voinovich of Ohio, a strong bailout supporter, said the UAW was willing to make the cuts — but not until 2011.

Reid was working to set a swift test vote on the measure Thursday night, but it was just a formality. The bill was virtually certain to fail to reach the 60-vote threshold it would need to clear to advance.

Reid called the bill’s collapse “a loss for the country,” adding “I dread looking at Wall Street tomorrow. It’s not going to be a pleasant sight.”

The implosion followed an unprecedented marathon set of talks at the Capitol among labor, the auto industry and lawmakers who bargained into the night in efforts to salvage the auto bailout at a time of soaring job losses and widespread economic turmoil.

“In the midst of already deep and troubling economic times, we are about to add to that by walking away,” said Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., the Banking Committee chairman who led negotiations on the package.

Jobless Claims Reach 26-Year High

December 11, 2008

The number of Americans filing new unemployment insurance claims jumped last week to a 26-year high, surpassing the number of filings economists had predicted.

From CNN Money:

The Labor Department reported Thursday that initial filings for state jobless benefits surged to 573,000 for the week ended Dec. 6. That was an increase of 58,000 from a revised 515,000 claims in the previous week.

It was the highest number of jobless claims since Nov. 27, 1982 when initial filings hit 612,000. Economists were expecting jobless claims increase to 525,000, according to a consensus compiled by Briefing.com.

The four-week moving average of jobless claims, which works to eliminate fluctuations in data was 540,500 last week, an increase of 14,250 from the previous week’s revised average of 526,250.

One economist said the number of initial claims decreased in the previous report because the data from that report represented the week of Thanksgiving. Some of the surge in initial filings in this current report could be a bounce from that week.

However, “the underlying trend in the labor market is that it continues to weaken,” said Jay Bryson, global economist with Wachovia Economics, and that is evident in the 4-week moving averages of initial claims.

The number of people continuing to collect unemployment rose to 4,429,000 in the week ended Nov. 29, the most recent week available, which was also a 26-year high. The measure was an increase of 338,000 from the preceding week’s revised level of 4,091,000.

Sony Eliminates 8,000 Jobs

December 9, 2008

Sony has announced that the company will eliminate 8,000 jobs and rein in planned investment as it reacts to the global economic slowdown.

From CRN:

Sony said Tuesday it would cut 8,000 jobs in reaction to sluggish sales, particularly of its televisions and digital cameras. That number comprises regular workers and represents 4 percent of Sony’s entire workforce. Sony also said it plans to reduce head count in its seasonal and temporary workforces. The move is aimed at slashing $1.1 billion in operational and investment costs. Sony’s investment in the electronics business will decrease by approximately 30 percent in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2010. That includes plans to cut investment expenditures this fiscal year by outsourcing part of the company’s proposed increase in the manufacturing of CMOS image sensors for use in mobile phones to third parties.

According to Sony, certain short-term measures have already been taken, including adjusting production, lowering inventory levels and reducing operational expenses. But the appreciation of the yen means that the Japanese manufacturer will need to adjust product pricing, downsize and realign domestic and overseas manufacturing sites, reallocate its workforce and reduce head count.

Sony’s moves will have global impact. For example, the company is postponing plans to invest in production expansion at the Nitra plant in Slovakia, which assembles LCD televisions for the European market. Further, the manufacturer plans to close two overseas manufacturing sites, including the Sony Dax Technology Center in France, which manufactures tape and other recording media. Overall, the total number of manufacturing sites will be reduced by roughly 10 percent, from the current total of 57, by March 31, 2010.

From the New York Times:

Sony, which had already announced scattered cost-savings measures, blamed the rapid deterioration in the global economic outlook and the strength of the Japanese currency for the cuts.

“These initiatives are in response to the sudden and rapid changes in the global economic environment,” Sony, which has 160,000 employees, said in a statement. Sony aims save more than 100 billion yen, or $1.1 billion, a year through the measures, which also include shutting several plants.

About 10 percent of the company’s 57 plants will be shut, including 2 overseas sites, and plans to expand a site in Slovakia where LCD televisions for the European market are assembled have been delayed. The statement did specify which plants will be closed.

Sony will also trim spending in semiconductors and will outsource a part of the production it had planned for image sensors for cellphones.

“Based on such measures, Sony is planning to reduce investment in the electronics business by approximately 30 percent” in the fiscal year ending March 2010, the company said.

The announcements highlight the extent of the pain many Asian exporters — especially in Japan — are facing as the global financial crisis deepens. Like other Japanese manufacturers, Sony has suffered from slowing consumer demand, aggravated by the yen’s rally against the dollar and the euro in recent months, which makes Japanese goods more expensive for consumers in the United States and Europe.


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