February 13, 2009

News from the past: Have we hit the bottom yet?

Filed under: FYI,history,US — DF @ 3:12 am
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According to San Jose Mercury News (April  12, 2001): “One of the great ironies of the stock market — and one reason why it’s so hard to time — is that you never know you’ve reached a bottom until it’s well over. No one officially announces, “Ladies and gentlemen, this is it. You may now resume having fun.”

But with the rallies in the Nasdaq index and the Dow Jones average this week and last, it’s worth asking the question: Have we passed the bottom? Was Wednesday of last week the low ebb? Is the worst behind us?

(On April 12, 2001 Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 10126. It took another year and  half for the market to hit the bottom: on September 27, 2002 Dow Jones closed at 7701 ~

January 29, 2009

Jobless claims hit record peak, orders plummet

According to Reuters: “The number of people remaining on the benefits roll after drawing an initial week of aid, or continued claims, rose 159,000 to a higher-than-forecast 4.776 million in the week ended January 17, the most recent week for which data is available.

  • The Labor Department said this was the highest reading since its records on this series began in 1967
  • Analysts had expected continued claims to be 4.65 million

January 16, 2009

Brutal job losses continue in 2009

Filed under: FYI,US — DF @ 4:32 pm
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According to CNN Money: “The job market is off to a terrible start this year, with companies announcing more than 80,000 job losses so far, in one of the most painful symptoms of the ongoing recession.”

Job cuts in January, 2009

Circuit City 34,000 Microsoft ?
Alcoa 13,500 TDK Corp. 8,000
Boeing 4,500 Motorola 4,000
Hertz 4,000 Honda 3,100
EMC Corp. 2,400 Barclay’s 2,100
Cessna 2,000 MeadWestvaco Corp. 2,000
WellPoint 1,500 Cigna 1,100
Saks Fifth Avenue 1,100 Walgreens 1,000
Schlumberger 1,000 ING Group 950
Macy’s 900 Cummings 800
Autodesk 750 Pfizer 700
Logitech 500 Oracle 500
Neiman Marcus Groups 375 Ethan Allen 350
New Yaork & Co. 350 Barnes & Noble 100
Google 100 World Wrestling Entertainmnet 60

Total: 91,735

(read comments for updates)

January 9, 2009

Keep your job: A 10-point survival guide

Filed under: FYI — DF @ 12:38 pm
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According to CNN Money: “If layoffs, restructurings, and a foggy future at work have you rattled, try to take control of the things you can. Here’s how”:

  • Create successes for yourself.
  • Set 30-day and 60-day goals.
  • Watch your attitude.
  • Keep your network active.
  • Update your skills.
  • Make sure your work serves the larger goals of the organization.
  • For now, forget about work-life balance.
  • Take a hard look at your finances.
  • Never badmouth anyone.
  • Remember, in the knowledge economy, you are the product.

Source: CNN Money

January 8, 2009

Germany’s Job Creation Machine Sputters

SpiegelOnLine reports: “According to a report released on Wednesday by the Federal Labor Agency, which tracks German unemployment statistics, the number of jobless rose by 114,000 in December, bringing the total to 3.102 million or 7.4 percent.”

“On average, the total number of unemployed last year was 508,000 lower than in 2007. Analysts, though, anticipate that 2009 will see increased job losses in Germany.”

January 7, 2009

Fed Minutes Offer No Comfort

According to Forbes: “The U.S. Federal Reserve sees an economy mired in recession, with only a slow march to improvement into 2010.”

“Most members of the policy-setting committee expect the economy to recover slowly in the second half of 2009, with an aggregate contraction in the country’s gross domestic product for the year, and a significant rise in unemployment into 2010.”

“[..]they expect the worst financial crisis in more than a half century is going to get even worse. In addition to putting further pressure on U.S. home prices, the unemployment rate will also rise above 11.0%, they projected.”

January 6, 2009

Consumer bankruptcies jump in 2008

According to CNN Money: “Bankruptcy filings by American consumers increased nearly a third in 2008, according to a new report.

The American Bankruptcy Institute said overall consumer filings rose to 1.06 million in 2008, compared with 801,840 during 2007. The ABI based its study on data from the National Bankruptcy Research Center.”

January 5, 2009

The biggest CEO firings of 2008

The biggest names to be shown the door as a result of the economic crisis:

  • Martin Sullivan of American International Group (let go in June)
  • Kerry Killinger at Washington Mutual (September)
  • Richard Fuld of Lehman Brothers (leaving next month)

“Their distinguished company includes James Cayne of the now-deceased Bear Stearns and Richard Syron and Daniel Mudd, the former CEOs of the mortgage buyers Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.”,  according to Forbes and MSNBC

“There are two kinds of CEO firings,” says Noel Tichy, a professor at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan. “There are the crooks and there are the incompetents.” This year the biggest departing names all fell into a gray area in between.”

Source: Forbes, MSNBC

December 31, 2008

Life after a six-figure salary

According to CNN Money: “With fewer jobs available, unemployed workers are taking any position they can find – even if it comes with a salary cut.”

“In fact, 63% of unemployed workers said they would be willing to accept a job offer that pays less than their previous job, according to a recent survey conducted by the National Employment Law Project. Still, only 37% of respondents expressed high confidence in finding a job in the next four months despite being willing to make such a sacrifice.”

December 30, 2008

Confidence Sinks to Record Low on Jobs

Filed under: FYI,General,Obama,US — DF @ 11:06 am
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According to Bloomberg: “The share of consumers who said jobs are plentiful fell to 6.2 percent, the lowest level in 16 years, from 8.7 percent last month, today’s report showed. The proportion of people who said jobs are hard to get increased to 42 percent from 37.1 percent.”

“That wasn’t enough to overcome the damage from the loss of 1.9 million jobs and a slump in household wealth after the collapse of home and stock prices.”

The jobless rate could reach 8.2 percent at the end of next year compared with last month’s 15-year high of 6.7 percent, according to the survey.”

“President-elect Barack Obama has expanded his economic stimulus goals and called for creating or saving 3 million jobs over the next two years. Vice President-elect Joe Biden said Dec. 23 the incoming administration and congressional leaders are nearing an agreement on the broad principles of a stimulus policy.”

December 10, 2008

Rio Cuts 14,000 Jobs, Spending as Demand Falters

According to Bloomberg: “Rio Tinto Group, the world’s third- largest mining company, will eliminate 14,000 jobs, reduce capital spending by more than half and sell “significant assets” as demand for metals sinks in the global recession. “

Economic pain hits China as exports fell last month

Filed under: China,economy — DF @ 11:03 am
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According to IHT: “China’s exports fell for the first time in seven years, the government reported Wednesday, sliding 2.2 percent in November and providing stark evidence that the global financial crisis had arrived here in earnest. In October, by contrast, exports had surged 19.2 percent.

Imports also plunged sharply last month, falling 17.9 percent and widening the trade surplus to $40 billion from $35.2 billion in October.”

December 5, 2008

Avis cuts 2,200 jobs

According to AP and CNNMoney: “Car rental company Avis Budget Group Inc. said Thursday that it has cut more than 2,200 jobs and taken other steps to meet its goal of reducing annual costs by $150 million to $200 million by the middle of 2009.”

Useful tips at Career Change ( portal

Lots of useful tips could be found at BusinessWeek | Career Change portal: “Switching jobs is one thing, but changing careers is an even bigger challenge. This topic covers today’s best strategies and advice for executive, managerial, and professional career changers.”

Lost: 1.9 million jobs

According to CNNMoney:  “The 2008 tally soars after payrolls shrink by 533,000 in November, the biggest one-month decline in nearly 34 years, bringing the year’s total job losses to 1.9 million. Unemployment soars to 6.7%. November had the largest monthly job loss total since December 1974.”

jobs lost

jobs lost

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