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Marketplace Scratch Pad

Morning Reading

Scott Jagow May 13, 2009

Retail sales stink. What else is new? Well, foreclosures are ridiculously high. I said, what else is new?

Yet another Greenspan housing bottom call (The Big Picture)
“Few people have been worse than Greenspan in analyzing the Housing market. In fact, the only person / group I can think of with a consistently worse track record than Greenspan’s of analyzing the housing market was the group he spun his foolishness to yesterday: The National Association of Realtors.”

(From Hank Blaustein’s famous cartoons)

Chrysler and the rule of law (Wall Street Journal)
“By stepping over the bright line between the rule of law and the arbitrary behavior of men, President Obama may have created a thousand new failing businesses. That is, businesses that might have received financing before but that now will not, since lenders face the potential of future government confiscation. In other words, Mr. Obama may have helped save the jobs of thousands of union workers whose dues, in part, engineered his election. But what about the untold number of job losses in the future caused by trampling the sanctity of contracts today?”

Recession forces couples to split for work (Minnesota Public Radio)
“The recession is forcing some families to split up temporarily. Work isn’t easy to come by, and in some families, moms and dads have to strike out far from home to find it.”

How to get Main Street off Wall Street’s back (Fortune)
“One quick way the Obama administration could tame the outrage index would be to deal with Wall Street the way it is dealing with Chrysler. If Citi and Bank of America are actually insolvent, as some analysts claim, then let the government break them up and reorganize them. That would go a long way toward dispelling the notion that the Treasury is bailing out fat cats at the expense of working stiffs.”

Obama Gets Corporate Tax Policy Backwards (Real Clear Markets)
“Despite the popular perception in the media that our global firms spend most of their effort opening up sweatshops in poor countries, in the latest period studied, between 1995 and 2000, multinationals in rich countries were five times more likely to invest in operations in other countries where labor costs were comparable.”

The Ten Biggest Tech Failures Of The Last Decade (24/7 Wall Street)
In order — Microsoft Vista, Gateway, HD-DVD, Vonage, YouTube, Sirius-XM, Microsoft Zune, Palm, Iridium and the Segway!

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