On Tuesday, the Treasury reported the federal government's receipts and expenses for June. The upshot: through the first nine months of fiscal 2010 (which started last fall), the federal government has run a $1 trillion deficit.
Now that the sealing cap has been installed, all eyes turn to the well-integrity test, which BP is starting today. The test will involve completely "shutting in" the well so the full pressure of the oil gusher can be measured, giving the scientists and engineers a read on the structural stability of the piping that lines the 13,000-foot-long well.
Company insiders, past and present, say the Deepwater Horizon disaster was not a mystery. They describe a risk-taking culture spanning decades where profits come before safety, and whistle-blowers are intimidated, pressured out, or fired. And though Hayward had promised to make the company safer when he became CEO in 2007, the pressure to cut costs has only intensified under his leadership as the oil company struggled to please shareholders.
As job creation and an economic growth stall, the Obama administration is being criticized not just from all parts of the political spectrum in the U.S. but also from big business, which increasingly believes that the president harbors a thinly camouflaged antibusiness bias.
In the U.S. and the U.K. in particular, there’s a sense that overreliance on dodgy financial services is no way to create decent jobs for the masses or to build a more stable economy. In these and many other countries, like France and Germany, influential voices are calling for a return to the business of producing real goods.
When Tesla Motors went public June 29, it was hailed as the first IPO by an American automaker since Ford in 1956. Shares spiked 41 percent, raising $226 million for the electric-car company. But buyers quickly hit the brakes: within a week, Tesla’s stock was below its offering price.
As the economy recovers and workers begin contributing more cash to their retirement accounts, employees should be wary of investing too much in their company stock—be it out of loyalty, optimism, or some predesignated company plan.
Like second marriages, Time's new, extra-confusing pay wall is the triumph of hope over experience. For several reasons I think this is destined to, if not fail, to at least not provide, shall we say, the optimal outcome for Time Inc.
When the U.S. Postal Service loses money, it's effectively subsidizing inefficient business models and operations. And less mail would be better for the economy, better for businesses and consumers, and better for the environment.
The atrocious jobs numbers released Friday have added new fuel to the already heated debate over what the government should be doing to help unemployed Americans. But for the time being, it remains mostly an academic spat among wonks. The fact is that any real progress on solutions for unemployment has screeched to a halt on Capitol Hill and won’t get back on track until at least next week.
When historians write about the great recession of 2007–08, they may very well have a new name for it: the Mancession. It’s a term already being bandied about in the popular media as business writers chronicle the sad tales of the main victims of the recession: men.
Blaming foreign speculators for the continent’s troubles may be a popular sport in Paris and Berlin, but most of those problems are entirely homegrown. Europe’s dirty secret is that its banking sector is sicker than Wall Street.
Americans' taste in movies is--how to put this delicately?--not so demanding. But the list that Netflix publishes of its all-time most-rented movies is a delight, and a surprise. Of the top six films, three won the Oscar for Best Picture, and a fourth was nominated. See the full list here.
Stiff competition from Amazon and Apple is one reason for the gloomy income statement the company released this week: Barnes & Noble lost $32 million in the quarter ending May 1, compared with a $2 million loss during the same period last year.
In the hierarchy of Wall Street, Goldman Sachs has become the top dog: the cool, smart kid who finance geeks want to be. And, although Goldman’s top brass gets dragged down to Washington, D.C., the bank still reigns, at least financially.
As we plow through the legislation to figure out the winners and the losers of the new financial rules, it’s worth pondering what Wall Street got out of the crisis. Most of the reaction, in fact, nods to it being a boon to the banks. And some of those benefits will remain intact even after the legislation passages. Here’s a look at the handouts given to Wall Street.
Despite the volatility in many sectors, there's still hope for job seekers across the spectrum of education and skills. NEWSWEEK consulted the Bureau of Labor Statistics and career counselors to predict the most stable professions for years to come.
Hedge funds are an integral part of the global financial order, but they operate with little regulation. Really, it’s anything goes. Sebastian Mallaby makes a case for them by way of a glamorized history.
Just once, it would be nice if a president would level with Americans on energy. Barack Obama isn't that president. His speech the other night was about political damage control: his own. It was full of misinformation and mythology. Obama held out a gleaming vision of an America that would convert to the "clean" energy of, presumably, wind, solar, and biomass. It isn't going to happen for many, many decades, if ever.
Representatives of several oil companies will stand in front of a federal judge today and ask for a moratorium on deepwater drilling to be lifted. The government argues that more work needs to be done to assess the issues associated with drilling at depth. BP CEO Tony Hayward argues ... well, nothing really. He was busy racing his yacht over the weekend.
Ever since oil began gushing from the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico, BP has become as British as Wimbledon, as foreign as football played with a round ball. As a result, it's possible the company will suffer harsher treatment at the hands of consumers and lawmakers.
After years of mounting customer outrage over its clogged network, AT&T has finally scrapped its unlimited-data plan and raised the price on heavy data users. It’s a wonder it took so long. Since the iPhone debuted exclusively on AT&T in June 2007, Apple stock has risen 110 percent, while AT&T is down 38 percent. The $30-a-month unlimited plan was designed to attract customers, and with 50 million iPhones sold, it did. But AT&T’s network was crippled as a few users hogged bandwidth: 3 percent of AT&T’s smart-phone customers use 40 percent of its data. AT&T now offers a two-tiered system: 200 megabytes for $15 a month; two gigs for $25. Use more than that, and you’ll pay extra. Network strain is likely to ease as a result, and analysts believe others will follow AT&T and that the switch will usher in a new era of (more profitable) metered data-pricing.
"Look out for the Brazilians and the Indians," the CEO of a large Fortune 500 consumer products company told me at a lunch a few months ago. And he wasn't talking about the World Cup. He was responding to a question about where the next wave of foreign investors in U.S. assets will come from. A few years ago, dealmakers were abuzz—and many analysts were fearful—about the prospect of sovereign wealth funds from the Persian Gulf and China shifting their strategies from buying U.S. government bonds to purchasing U.S. companies. Since many of those bubble-era deals exploded, the sovereign wealth funds have become much less aggressive about entering the U.S. market.
The federal government has to step in with aid for the states. The Obama administration has asked for about $50 billion for 2011, but experts say they'd really need about twice that. The trick, however, is that you don't want to reward profligate spending under the cover of mitigating an economic disaster. And helping states solely on the size of their budget holes would do exactly that.
The SEC filing for Tesla Motors, Inc.’s public offering reads like a laundry list of how and why the company will never make money. Tesla announced Tuesday that it would publicly sell 10 million shares for $14 to $16 a piece on June 29. The “risk factors” section alone clocks in at 42 pages.
President Obama's Oval Office speech about the Gulf oil spill was almost enough to make you miss President George W. Bush. Maybe not the actual presidency of George W. Bush, but at least the platonic ideal of the presidency of George W. Bush—the M.B.A. president, the chief executive as CEO.
Even before the financial crisis, the spending power of women was increasing in both rich and poor countries. The downturn has accelerated the trend, particularly in the United States. American men lost more jobs (they worked in the hardest-hit areas like financial services and manufacturing), whereas women started more companies.
It's psychology, stupid. Not since World War II has an economic recovery been so hobbled by poor confidence. Every recession leaves a legacy of anxiety and uncertainty. But the present residue is exceptional, because the recession was savage and--more important--its origins (housing bubble, financial crisis) were unfamiliar.
Politicians worldwide are buying votes by cutting spending. Slow-growing, highly indebted countries in Southern Europe (Spain, Italy, Portugal) see austerity as a way to avoid the fate of Greece. Others are reacting to fears of stimulus-induced inflation.
Online shoe retailer Zappos made a name for itself with topnotch customer service. It paid off: Amazon bought it for $1.2 billion last fall. In his new book, Delivering Happiness, CEO Tony Hsieh talks about Zappos’s unique business approach and giving customers that “wow” feeling.
As Western economies begin to recover, extravagant, eye-popping architecture is giving way to a subtler new aesthetic. In the U.S. and Europe, architectural values are shifting from can-you-top-this designs toward more efficient, functional building.
Four thousand miles of ocean won’t insulate the U.K. from BP’s catastrophic mess in the Gulf of Mexico. The woes of Britain’s second-largest company are sure to spill into the country’s already faltering economy. Last week Business Secretary Vince Cable warned of “major, indirect effects on the British economy” from the spill, with investors among the principal victims.
With the release of his new book, investigative journalist Tom Bower gives us a glimpse of what the oil spill debacle must look like from the boardroom. NEWSWEEK chatted with Bower about how the industry got itself into this mess, and where it might be headed next.
Over the past 28 years, by making lingerie affordable, accessible, and acceptable, Victoria's Secret has created a middle ground in intimate apparel. Meet the man who brought sexy undergarments into the mainstream.
Jérôme Kerviel, the rogue trader who lost billions for the French bank Société Générale, begins his trial today. The financial calamities we've witnessed since his crime make his $5.9 billion loss seem almost quaint.
Despite being in charge as BP has failed—and failed, and failed again—to stop the flow of crude oil into the Gulf and some poor turns of phrase ("I want my life back") the BP leader may have the most secure corporate seat in Great Britain.
The federal panel investigating the financial crisis subpoenaed Goldman Sachs on Monday for information on the company's role in contributing to the recession, with commission chairman Phil Angelides citing Goldman's "deliberate effort to run out the clock" as a factor in the subpoena.