Bad News

I didn’t do well in economics and I don’t claim to know much about abstractions like “the economy,” but I do know how to read a newspaper. People have been trying to find the right words for what’s going in America today: slowdown, recession, depression. When people line up outside their bank, praying that they […]

Green Energy Firms Need Conscious Communicators

In the past few months, just about every major company in the semiconductor business has joined a rush into the solar industry, paving the way for what observers predict will be cheaper, better and more efficient equipment for both consumers and businesses. Mark Pinto of Applied Materials According to The Austin American-Statesman, worldwide installations of […]

“Reply All” Catches A Rat

In today’s “Sunday Business” section I came across an appalling piece on the mortgage crisis. Particularly off-putting is an email communication from Countrywide’s co-founder and CEO, Angelo Mozilo. Mozilo responded, by mistake, to a mortgage holder in turmoil, who had asked for his help. “This is unbelievable. Most of these letters now have the same […]

Not A Good Time To Be On A Car Account

The Bush administration’s economic stimulus package is far from enough to drive Americans into their local car and truck dealer. June’s sales numbers, compared to June 2007 are horrible and a sign of a seriously weakened economy. According to The Wall Street Journal, American consumers long enamored with trucks and SUVs are now looking for […]

A Purchase Is A Purchase

According to BusinessWeek, the type of purchases one makes with a credit card can determine one’s credit score. The FTC suit against Atlanta-based CompuCredit for allegedly “deceptive” marketing practices offers a rare look inside the opaque business of credit scoring. It reveals a mechanism that consumer advocates and politicians have long suspected exists—one in which […]

No Money? Travel Anyway.

Don’t let the economy quash your vacation plans. That’s the message coming from several destinations, as consumers face inflationary prices at every turn. Stuart Elliott of The New York Times points to Las Vegas, Panama City Beach, Orlando and other cities that are stepping off their brand messaging platforms in favor of price promotions. “ […]

Say, Can I Have Some Purple Berries? Yes, I’ve Been Eating Them For Six Or Seven Weeks Now. Probably Keep Us Both Alive.

Earlier this week Kraft – which makes its namesake cheese singles, Philadelphia cream cheese and Oscar Mayer meats – posted a 13% drop in first- quarter net income amid surging costs for dairy, wheat and other commodities. According to Dow Jones, food manufacturers like Kraft Foods are blaming ethanol producers for cost increases. Kraft’s Chief […]

It’s Hard To Drive Purchase When People Aren’t Driving

When I filled up my Pathfinder yesterday, I realized that $3.54/gallon means a $70 tank–double what it cost me a short time ago. Naturally, this type of inflation has dire consequences for the economy. For the first time since 1980, consumers are driving less. Last year, the amount of miles driven declined 0.4%. The previous […]