If you were to calculate a headlines/efficacy ratio for government and corporate leaders, executive pay czar Kenneth Feinberg would have to rank pretty high on the "most press for least accomplished" list.
Now that Bank of America (BAC
) and Citigroup (C
) are out from the somewhat watchful eye of Mr. Feinberg, he has only American International Group (AIG
), the car companies, and GMAC to meddle with at little benefit to anyone.
So what does he do to keep himself occupied? He chats on the phone
with Goldman Sachs (GS
) CEO Lloyd Blankfein about how that company can better align pay for its executives, even though he has no authority over -- or interest in -- that company's policies.
Continue reading Kenneth Feinberg Tries Desperately to Stay Relevant
The catastrophe bond market will be heating up over the next few months, thanks to a combination of favorable market conditions and new investors. Michael Halsband, Vice President at Goldman Sachs (GS
), said to Reuters that the cat bond issuance market got off to an early start in January
, despite the fact that the first quarter is usually rather quiet. This follows the recent closing of the year's first cat bond, Foundation Re III, by The Hartford (HIG
According to Halsband, "From January to June this year, $2.7 billion of transactions will mature and most of that is expected to be placed straight back into the ILS [insurance
-linked securities] sector," continuing, "In addition, we believe between $1.5 and $2.5 billion of new capital has flowed into dedicated ILS funds and along with the $2.7 billion of maturities. Around $5 billion will be available to be put to work in the cat bond sector."
Continue reading Insurance Companies to See Hot Cat Bond Market
The widely anticipated IPO for Tesla Motors is finally here. Based in Silicon Valley, the company designs and manufactures high-performance, fully electric cars. The investors include the co-founders of Google (GOOG), Larry Page and Sergey Brin, and the founder is Elon Musk, who helped create PayPal.
The company's first car, which came on the market in 2008, is the Tesla Roadster. It can go from zero to 60 MHP in 3.9 seconds -- without any tailpipe emissions. On a single charge, the car can also go 236 miles. However, the price tag comes to a hefty $109,000.
Continue reading Tesla Revs Up for an IPO
One of the true icons of finance, Goldman Sachs Group (GS), issued its Q4 report this morning. The stock has been weak off the numbers; at the time of this writing, shares were down well over 5%, and volume was very active. Looking through the press release, I didn't come away as bearish as the market. Then again, the session as a whole was rather choppy, so perhaps overall sentiment was exerting an influence. Still, a 5% sell-off is notable.
Let's look at some highlights. For the fourth quarter, Goldman, whose colleagues include JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Morgan Stanley (MS), made $8.20 per share. Last year at this time, the company reported a loss of $4.97 per share. Besides improving year-over-year, per-share profit increased over 50% on a sequential basis as well. According to Earnings.com, $5.20 was the number to beat.
Continue reading Goldman Sachs Not In Demand After Q4 Report
If there ever was a stock that was hiding in plain sight, it is that of Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B
) which is capitalized at a tad over $150 billion and run by "my pal Warren"
and his pal Charlie. That's Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger, perhaps the most successful investors in five generations.
Berkshire Hathaway, a textile mill, was Buffett's first turn-around play. He was successful and started generating significant amounts of free cash-flow that allowed him to invest in other things. Those investments also paid off and eventually the original enterprise became the namesake of today's diversified giant holding company.
I selected BRK.B for numerous reasons and believe it will easily beat the market next year as has been it's history.
Continue reading Chasing Value: 2010 -- #1 Berkshire Hathaway
Brokerage firm Goldman Sachs (GS
) has started meeting its major investors
in an attempt to stop criticism over its record compensation, the Wall Street Journal
reported. Think this is a bit of overkill? Not when the average GS employee is set to earn $700,000 this year (how do I sign up for that gig?). These meetings are the first of their kind and are expected to continue for several more weeks. The Wall Street firm is defending its pay, especially in the wake of the economic crisis that some contend it partially behind.
GS is trying to win support for its compensation packages, which is why the company is going to the shareholders. These investors are the actual owners of the firm and hold the power to change the company's compensation structure. Of course, employees and executives are hoping there would be no change, and the campaigning is heavy.
Continue reading Goldman Sachs discusses pay with major investors
According to The Wall Street Journal
, some of Goldman Sachs's (GS
) largest shareholders are petitioning the company to lower the size of its bonus pool
. These shareholders feel that GS should be passing along more of its earnings to investors. According to "people familiar with the situation," these investors hold "tens of millions" of GS shares and are complaining in private conversations at GS's annual analyst meetings.
With GS raking in record net income and compensation, the shareholders believe that the benefits should be shared among them rather than in compensation and benefit for the employees. The shareholders are also concerned about a minute change in the firm's financial statements regarding how the company counts the number of employees.
Continue reading Goldman Sachs shareholders want less bonuses, more of the profit
Export orders were on the rise in October in China, suggesting a strengthening recovery and an opportunity to cut back on stimulus spending. The manufacturing measure grew at its fastest rate in the past year and a half, according to the HSBC (NYSE: HBC) purchasing managers' index. It increased to a seasonally adjusted 55.4 from 55 in September.
If you're looking for a reason behind the gain, it's all in the flow of capital. In addition to the government's economic stimulus package, $1.27 trillion in new loans were written to help deliver the country from the global financial crisis.
Continue reading Manufacturing, economic growth in China
For the past 48 hours people have been asking me if I thought the market would pull back after the Dow Jones Industrial Average surpassed the milestone of 10,000. Business journalist's and guru's alike have suggested that there might be some profit taking or "selling into strength" and the recent highs would not hold.
As the market proved yesterday, up about a half percent across the board, with the Dow closing at 10,062.94, up 47.08 in last-minute buying -- that is just a lot of noise.
Continue reading Serious Money: Dow 10,000 is meaningless
We had a lot of big names trading up to new 52 week highs again today. The overall markets were pretty flat, with the DOW closing the day down 0.14%, the NASDAQ closing the day's trading up 0.04%, and the S&P ending the day a bit lower to finish today's trading down 0.28%.
Here are a few of the names that moved higher during the day to set new 52 week highs.
Continue reading Some big names setting new highs today: STAR, GG, PIR, EBAY
Next Page >