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Marketplace Scratch Pad

Morning Reading

Scott Jagow Jul 14, 2009

President Obama’s car guy is out. Goldman Sachs is rich again. A woman Tweets through a bank robbery. And you can buy Businessweek for a dollar. I don’t mean one issue. I mean the entire company:

The Financial Times reports that McGraw Hill may have to sell Businessweek for a measly buck. More from the New York Post:

“There is no logical buyer,” said one source.

Added Roland DeSilva, managing partner at media investment bank DeSilva & Phillips: “They can’t compete as a weekly anymore because financial information is so time sensitive.”

The FT also has an op-ed piece that says debt is the real evil (reminds me of something I said not too long ago). Anyway, from the FT:

We believe that stimulus packages, in all their forms, make the same mistakes that got us here. They will lead to extreme overshooting or extreme undershooting. They lead to more borrowing, by socialising private debt. But running a government deficit is dangerous, as it is vulnerable to errors in projections of economic growth. These errors will be larger in the future, so central bank money creation will lead not to inflation but to hyper-inflation, as the system is set for bigger deviations than ever before…

The only solution is to transform debt into equity across all sectors, in an organised and systematic way. Instead of sending hate mail to near-insolvent homeowners, banks should reach out to borrowers and offer lower interest payments in exchange for equity. Instead of debt becoming “binary” – in default or not – it could take smoothly-varying prices and banks would not need to wait for foreclosures to take action. Banks would turn from “hopers”, hiding risks from themselves, into agents more engaged in economic activity. Hidden risks become visible; hopers become doers.

Elsewhere, lots of speculation about President Obama’s chief auto adviser Steven Rattner leaving the job after less than six months.

The Telegraph’s headline on the Goldman Sachs profits report this morning: [Goldman Sachs’ profits smash Wall Street estimates](Goldman Sachs’ profits smash Wall Street estimates).

The magazine that’s worth a buck, Businessweek, contends the bank CIT is not too big to fail.

Silicon Alley Insider notes that a woman sent a series of Tweets during a bank robbery. If you look through them, it seems she was more concerned that her phone’s trackball was missing.

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