Monthly Archives: March 2010

Edfinancial — still alive despite the rhetoric

Despite heated warnings to the contrary, Koxville-based companies Edfinancial and Edamerica will survive and won’t be laying off hordes of employees.

Tony Hollin, chairman and CEO of both companies, said so. It’s right there in today’s News Sentinel story.

President Obama on Tuesday signed a law that ended the Federal Family Education Loan program in favor of direct government lending.

It should be noted that Edfinancial’s headquarters did not implode and employees did not run screaming for the unemployment office when the president signed the bill.

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Jobs, tax credits, the beach and Congressman who can’t read

News from around the blogosphere

Barron’s Stocks to Watch reports that payroll processor Automatic Data Processing expects a dismal jobs numbers report on Friday.

Fox News’ Elizabeth MacDonald says some Congressman apparently haven’t read the Health Reform Bill. Now there’s a surprise.

The Curious Capitalist says there’s talk of another extension of the home-buyer tax credit.

Property Scope says Tennessee Department of Revenue employees also work near the beach.

 

Superman is tops again

Superman+Comic+Auction.jpgI thought the economy was still supposed to be slow. Apparently some people have plenty of money to spend.

Auction site ComicConnect.com reported this week that it has sold a pristine copy of Superman’s 1938 debut comic book for an ultra cool $1.5 million.

(Associated Press image)

A month ago, a Batman comic book sold for $1,075,000. A few days before the Batman sale, another Superman comic book sold for $1 million.

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UT basketball makes Forbes “most valuable” list

Tennessee’s mens basketball team came tantalizing close this year to making its first trip to the Final Four.

But they did score a program first by landing a spot on Forbes.com list of the most valuable college basketball teams in the country.

The University of Tennessee Volunteers are No. 16 on the Forbes list, after not being ranked the year before. Forbes listed the value of the program at $14.1 million with a profit of $8.6 million.

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Homeland Security to inspect Tennessee businesses

The National Federation of Independent Business today circulated a press release urging Tennessee employers to get prepared for inspection by the Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement division.

NFIB noted that Homeland Security recently said it would check the hiring records of 180 businesses in Tennessee, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississipi and Alabama.

NFIB urges employers to take the “investigations very seriously” and reminds businesses that incorrect paperwork can result in finds of up $3,200 per violation.

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China, Citigroup and more

Highlights from the Rant$ and Rave$ blog roll:

As if U.S. auto makers didn’t have enough trouble, China appears ready to push its way into the global auto market.

The Curious Capitalist describes what Chinese auto maker Geely’s purchase of Volvo from Ford really means.

Barron’s Stocks To Watch talks about gold, oil, inflation and the U.S. Treasury announcement that it will sell its Citigroup shares this year.

Movie theater prices headed higher

CNNMoney.com reports movie fans will pay more at the box office starting this weekend. IMAX movie prices will go up the most, but price increases are expected across the board.

Officials with Knoxville-based Regal Entertainment Group, the largest movie theater operator in the country, could not immediately be reached for comment.

Here’s some related coverage:

TheStreet

The Motley Fool

This could be the silver lining

Here’s another reason job creation has been slow — some of Corporate America’s big dogs are sitting on piles of cash waiting to make their move.

Check out this story in the Los Angeles Times that talks about how some of America’s largest corporations — including Memphis-based  FedEx — have come out of the recession with plenty of money in the bank.

The question is when will they start to spend? When they do, we should start seeing improvement in the jobless numbers.

 

Jobless recovery continues

Here’s why job growth has yet to catch up and why it will be awhile before it does.

The Commerce Department reported that the U.S. economy in the 4th quarter last year grew 5.6 percent, less than previously estimated.

While any growth is good news after the worst recession in decades, projections of 3 percent growth in the first quarter of 2010 are disturbing. That’s not near fast enough to put much of a dent in the unemployment rate.

 Knoxville’s often lags the national trends so it looks like we’re in for a sluggish year.

Inflation — a matter of time

The Curious Capitalist asks an interesting question: Is Inflation Coming Back?

Hmmmm….

Pain was widespread during the Great Recession, but the one bright spot experts and pundits always talked about was the absence of runaway inflation.

A few months ago in my News Sentinel column on the up-and-down recovery, University of Tennessee economist William Fox asid that until consumer demand perks up inflation would be minimal.

“(Inflation) might eventually be a problem, but you have to think of it in phases and over the next year or two it’s not going to be a problem,” Fox said.

Let’s hope that’s the still the tiemtable. The economy — and my bank account — could use a little more cushion before inflation becomes an problem. And you know that eventually it will.