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  • GM’s Government Aided Come-Back Approved - 6 July 2009
  • Following three days of hearings in New York's bankruptcy courts last week, Federal Judge Robert Gerber approved a plan for General Motors to make a government aided come-back from bankruptcy. Judge Gerber noted that the multi-faceted plan was "the only available means to preserve the continuation of GM’s business". Having filed for court protection on 1 June, General Motors will essentially create a new company, one that is free of crippling debt and costly contracts. Unsecured bondholders who were given the opportunity to present their views at the hearings made it known that they were disappointed by the refusal to consider alternative means of restructuring and that the bankruptcy process had been speeded up to comply with the Treasury’s deadline of 10 July for government aid.

  • Third Quarter Kicks Off On Positive Note On Wall Street - 2 July 2009
  • Wall Street started the third quarter of 2009 on a positive note, with all three major stock indicators notching up small gains on Wednesday. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 57 points, the Standard & Poor's 500 gained 4 points, and the Nasdaq composite climbed 11 points, being 0.7 percent, 0.4 percent and 0.6 percent respectively. The improved performance of stocks is being attributed primarily to better than expected housing and manufacturing reports. An especially encouraging aspect of the manufacturing reports is that customer inventories are too low, suggesting that production figures should pick up soon as inventories are raised to more realistic levels.

  • Personal Savings; Bank Failures; Week Ahead on Wall Street - 29 June 2009
  • Both the Dow Jones industrial average and the Standard & Poor’s 500 slipped on Friday ending on a low for the second week running, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite managed to notch up a small gain for the week. The rally which had been spurred on by speculation that the U.S. economy is beginning to stabilize, was pushed off track by recent economic reports indicating the road to recovery may still be some way off. A Commerce Department report released on Friday revealed that personal income had surged, however, savings had done the same. This is seen as a sign that investors are choosing to sit out the recession, rather than to spend at the present time. Savings in relation to income rose from 5.6 percent in April to 6.9 percent in May. Bearing in mind that economic growth is largely dependent on consumer spending, economist see the mounting personal savings rate as a cause of concern.

  • Investors Ponder Housing Market, Regulatory Restructuring and Inflation/Deflation Fears - 24 June 2009
  • Monday saw stocks fall to a three-week low on Wall Street, mostly due to the World Bank's dismal outlook on the global economy growth. The better than expected housing market report slowed the decline on Tuesday, but failed to regain losses entirely and the day drew to a close with the Dow Jones industrial average falling 0.2 percent, the Nasdaq composite remaining virtually unchanged and the Standard & Poor's 500 managing a 0.2 percent gain. Prior to the losses recorded over the past week or so, markets had enjoyed a 14 week rally, primarily fuelled by optimism that the economy was on the road to recovery - a viewpoint which now appears to have been premature, or overly optimistic.

  • Bank Credit Rating Cuts Ahead of Regulator Overhaul - 18 June 2009
  • Fears that the recession may drag on longer than anticipated, made investors nervous and impacted negatively on Wall Street at the beginning of the week. A tech rally on Wednesday boosted the Nasdaq composite index with a gain of 0.7 percent. However, news of credit rating cuts for US banks caused financials to slide, dragging the Dow Jones industrial average with it, ending the day with a 0.1 percent loss, with a similar loss being recorded by the Standard & Poor's 500.

  • Wall Street Recoups 2009 Losses, Looks to Week Ahead - 15 June 2009
  • Following a day of ebb and flow on Wall Street, stock closed mixed on Friday with the Dow Jones industrial Average wiping out this year’s losses, ending the week at 8,799.41, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite fell to 1,858.80 and the Standard & Poor’s 500, a broad-market based index, crept up to close at 946.19. Trading volumes were sparse as the week drew to a close, which many view to be typical of summer trading and no cause for concern. Stock market investors appeared to be unaffected by the consumer sentiment index compiled by the University of Michigan, which showed a gain in June to be somewhat below market expectations, indicating that consumer optimism with regard to improved economic data has been dampened by concerns over inflation and the possible impact of higher interest rates.

  • Fiat Sets Chrysler Back on Track; GM Strives to Go Green - 11 June 2009
  • The U.S. auto industry has been under the spotlight for some months now, with bailouts, bankruptcy filings and major restructuring all receiving attention. Stock market investors have watched these developments with keen interest trying to gauge what effect government intervention will have on the industry, as well as all the related service and product suppliers that rely to a large extent on automakers for their continued existence.

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