7 years ago
The dispatches from the front lines of the global economic catastrophe have taken on a markedly schizoid quality during the past few days. In Washington, U.S. Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson executed yet another of his patented two-and-a-half backwards somersault, triple-salchow maneuvers. We haven’t received any scoring for Hank’s performance yet, presumably because the judges are waiting to see if he breaks his neck on the landing. After funneling about $290 billion in bailout funds to an unspecified number of financial institutions during the past month, Paulson told Congress in no uncertain terms last week that he had no intention of serving up any more huge portions of federal moolah. Then, on Monday, Paulson announced he was bailing out Citigroup to the tune of about $300 billion in debt guarantees and $20 billion in cash. On Tuesday, he announced that the Federal Reserve will pump out $800 billion in loans to anyone who wants to buy a house or a car. Hank, who apparently has more rescue formulas percolating in his head than Sybil had multiple personalities, didn’t specify who would supply the cash for this sudden burst of largesse. He didn�t have to — we could all hear the emergency printing presses at the Treasury roaring to life and spewing out extra-crispy Franklins. Adhering to the pattern of his previous mega-bailouts, Paulson didn’t ask for any management changes at Citigroup before he handed them $20 billion. He also didn’t ask them to rethink the $20 million they are spending annually to put their name on the Mets’ new ballpark. If he runs true to form, Hank probably will show up at Citi Field on Opening Day and get beaned by the first pitch. Before the markets could get roiled by Paulson’s frenetic careening, President-elect Obama emerged again in Chicago to reassure us that he has at least one hand on the steering wheel while Hank goes through his contortions and President George W. Bush models Peruvian leisure outfits during his farewell tour. The preternaturally calm Obama administered a hefty dose of verbal valium to bring us down from Paulson’s amphetamine-speak. Things eventually will work out, he told us, but it will take some time. And oh, by the way, it would be very useful if Congress could authorize about $700 billion in new public works spending before Christmas. Obama had his new crew of top economic advisors standing beside him as he administered this balm. Thankfully missing from this group was Robert Rubin, who ran the Treasury Department under President […]
The deepening economic malaise makes it imperative that businesses seize every potential revenue-generating opportunity that presents itself in coming months. The companies that succeed will be the ones that stay on top of their game, pay attention to fundamentals, and maximize the use of their resources. One such fundamental is the face-to-face meeting. We are pleased to report that early in 2009 commercial property dealmakers will have the opportunity to conduct a series of big-ticket meetings at a unique matchmaking event bringing together property owners/investors with real estate service providers. This month, Group C Media, Inc. held its fourth annual Business Facilities LiveXchange event in Huntington Beach, CA. For the past four years, LiveXchange has provided a unique and intensive meeting ground for site selectors and senior economic developers, supplemented with an all-star list of guest speakers addressing critical topics impacting on the current environment for development and economic growth. The up-close-and-personal interaction at LiveXchange between site selectors representing pre-qualified, big-ticket projects and the leading economic development specialists across the country has made the event a high-impact opportunity that provides a focal point for an essential part of the site-selection process. In 2009, Group C Media is introducing a new event that will apply our LiveXchange concept to the real estate services sector. The new event, Commercial Property Navigator LiveXchange, will take place at the landmark Hotel del Coronado in San Diego on March 22-24, 2009. According to Group C Media Co-President Ted Coene, Commercial Property Navigator LiveXchange is the next step in fulfilling Group C’s commitment to provide high-quality, value-add publications, online services and events that address the full life cycle of facilities development. Commercial Property Navigator LiveXchange will join a suite of successful products that include Business Facilities and Today’s Facility Manager magazines, Business Facilities LiveXchange, The TFM Forum, the annual Business Facilities Site Seekers’Guide, and a growing array of online services and databases. ”From the moment a company decides it needs to build, lease, or consolidate a new facility, corporate executives in charge of this daunting task can turn to Business Facilities or attend Business Facilities LiveXchange to find the perfect location,” Coene explains. ”Once the perfect location or building is identified, decision makers can now turn to Commercial Property Navigator LiveXchange to find the strategic services that are essential to successful commercial real estate development. Navigator LiveXchange, like Business Facilities LiveXchange, will create the most time-efficient and cost-effective event in the marketplace. High levels of repeat participation at Group C Media events demonstrate the value to […]
Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson emerged from his bunker in the epicenter of the financial crisis today to give us an update on his recent efforts to keep the U.S. economy afloat. In an upbeat Op-Ed piece in The New York Times, Paulson reported that he has successfully ”deployed a $250 billion capital injection” and stabilized the financial system. The $250 billion that Paulson ”deployed” came from the emergency $700 billion appropriation that Congress passed on Oct. 3 in a measure it called the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). The bailout bill was given this name because Paulson told Congress he was going to use the $700 billion to buy up all of the bad loans the banks made in their headlong binge to inflate the housing bubble. Hank now confesses that none of this money was used to purchase bad loans. He says it suddenly occurred to him a few days after the TARP bill was passed that ”the severity and magnitude” of the financial crisis necessitated an immediate injection of capital into the coffers of major banks — sort of like those huge needles of adrenaline that are jammed into the chests of heart attack victims on your favorite ER soap opera. Hank neglected to mention that the idea for this massive injection of capital actually came from the British prime minister, Gordon Brown. Brown used to be Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer (finance minister), so apparently he has a clearer concept regarding the workings of the banking industry than Paulson, a former Wall Street titan who used to run Goldman Sachs before cashing in to the tune of $500 million. Brown tapped Paulson on the shoulder last month and informed him that if the U.S. treasury chief went ahead with his asset-purchase scheme, the entire global financial system would quickly collapse while he was busy buying bad paper. He politely suggested that the U.S. follow Britain’s example and inject a massive amount of capital directly into the ailing banks, and then require them to start lending these funds to borrowers. Hank also neglected to tell us in his Op-Ed report exactly which financial institutions received the $250 billion worth of ”injections” from Washington and what they did with these funds. He hinted that most had used the moolah to adjust their lopsided balance sheets. According to numerous reports, the banks that received Paulson’s injections have been busy buying up other banks and paying dividends and bonuses. What they are not doing is making new loans. So it appears […]
It was announced today that the central Asian country of Kazakhstan will receive $700 million from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to construct a 2,715-kilometer transport corridor being dubbed the “new Silk Road.” This massive, $6.7 billion road-building endeavor, if successful, will be a boon to the fledgling nation’s growing infrastructure. The transport corridor will run from Khorogos, a city on Kazakhstan’s Chinese border, straight to its western front near Russia. Much like the original Silk Road, this project will create an intercontinental land link from Asia to Europe. “This new silk road will boost trade between Beijing and Brussels, and create extraordinary economic opportunities for the people of Kazakhstan and their neighbors,” says Juan Miranda, director general of ADB’s Central and West Asian Department. Click here to read more about this ambitious development project.
Abraham Lincoln was the first president to refer to America as ”the United States” instead of ”these United States.” When he dedicated a cemetery in 1863 at the site of the bloodiest battle of the Civil War, Lincoln posed an existential question to the American people. Standing on the broken fields of Gettysburg, PA, where more than 50,000 of his fellow citizens had perished, Lincoln wondered aloud whether any nation that based its existence on the premise that all human beings are created equal could long endure. Our commitment to this ideal had been consecrated in blood, he told us, and those who had given ”the last full measure of devotion” could do no more to keep faith with America’s great promise. That was up to the rest of us, Lincoln said. America’s greatest president did not live to see the ”new birth of freedom” he prayed for at Gettysburg. This task was left to the generations that followed, and they struggled with it. For 145 years, we tried, in painful fits and starts, to become a more perfect union. We tried to keep the promise set forth in the bold declaration of principles that was attached to America’s birth certificate. Slowly, painfully, we broke down the barriers that separated large portions of our citizenry from the ideal that we always told the world we embodied. Some of those barriers were constructed of legal manipulations embedded in the fine print of voting laws or redlined real estate transactions; others were human, standing in schoolhouse doors or behind lunch counters with a sneer on their faces and epithets on their lips; often, they were pervasive and insidious, a seemingly subconscious tribal urge to divide ourselves into North and South, Blue States and Red States, Us and Them. This week, the American people elected a new president. The issues and overheated rhetoric that roiled a seemingly endless campaign soon will fade into memory. The new president soon will take the oath of office and begin to make his mark on history, for better or for worse. To paraphrase Lincoln, the world will little note or long remember what was said in these tumultuous days. But it may remember what we actually did on Nov. 4, 2008. Because it appears that we finally have answered Lincoln’s question. We have decided, at long last, to be — to really be — the United States.
Eastman Business Park offers existing facilities, onsite power and water supplies, and 300 acres of undeveloped property for sale or lease.
An inside look at how a leading broker found the perfect site in Los Angeles for Fox’s burgeoning Interactive Media unit.
Policy reforms, economic shifts and offshoring are boosting emerging Far East economies.
A skilled, knowledge-based workforce and a competitive business climate have given Arizona one of the fastest-growing economies in the nation.
To put Alabama ahead of the pack, Governor Bob Riley is investing in the robotics research industry.