Congress expecting more sacrifices from automakers
DETROIT (AP) — A list of job cuts, shuttered factories, canceled
bonuses and commitments to fuel-efficient cars won’t be enough next
week when U.S. automakers get another shot to persuade Congress to
give them $25 billion in loans. Through the Thanksgiving weekend,
teams will be tagging more meat to throw at skeptical lawmakers who
vilified the automakers’ top executives the last time they went to
Washington. That means executive pay cuts, union concessions, and
perhaps even higher fuel economy requirements and a glimpse at
top-secret product plans.
Oil prices tumble; gas falls to 2004 levels
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Oil prices fell nearly 7 percent Tuesday
and gasoline prices fell to levels not seen since 2004 as a raft of
lousy news about the economy, housing and the consumer state of
mind suggested the U.S. is headed toward the worst recession in
decades. Consumers and businesses have pulled back on energy
spending, with massive layoffs and cost-cutting across almost every
sector. That means less money will go toward powering everything
from industrial plants to automobiles. Light, sweet crude for
January delivery on Tuesday tumbled $3.73 to settle at $50.77 a
barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Obama: Economic rescue will trump deficit fight
CHICAGO (AP) — The economy growing weaker, President-elect
Barack Obama said Tuesday that recovery efforts will trump deficit
concerns when he takes office in January. Yet he pledged a
”page-by-page, line-by-line” budget review to root out unneeded
spending. The president-elect set no goals for reducing the federal
deficit — now in record territory and headed ever higher — an
obvious contrast to Monday’s announcement that he hopes to create a
recession-busting 2.5 million jobs by 2010.
FDIC adds 54 more banks to its ‘problem list’
NEW YORK (AP) — The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. said Tuesday
the list of banks it considers to be in trouble shot up nearly 50
percent to 171 during the third quarter — yet another sign of
escalating problems among the institutions controlling Americans’
deposits. The 171 banks on the FDIC’s “problem list” encompass only
about 2 percent of the nearly 8,500 FDIC-insured institutions.
Still, the increase from 117 in the second quarter is sharp, and
the current tally is the highest since late 1995.
DR Horton swings to $800 million loss
(AP) — D.R. Horton Inc.’s chief executive said Tuesday he
expects this fiscal year to be even more challenging than 2008,
which ended with a nearly $800 million quarterly loss on slower
home sales and more than $1 billion in charges. The Fort Worth,
Texas-based homebuilder reported a net loss of $799.9 million, or
$2.53 a share, compared to a loss of $50.1 million or 16 cents a
share, in the year-ago period. Total sales for the quarter were
$1.75 billion, down from $3.12 billion in the fourth quarter 2007.
The company sold 6,961 homes in the fourth quarter, down 41percent
from year-ago levels.
AIG restricts exec compensation, CEO gets a dollar
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — American International Group Inc. said
Tuesday it is limiting how much it pays its top executives,
including granting a $1 salary for this year and the same for 2009
to its Chief Executive Edward Liddy. The decision is one of many
broader moves made by the troubled. The New York-based insurer,
which has been under pressure to restrict executive pay since
accepting billions in government assistance to save it from
collapse. has received about $150 billion so far, more than any
Fannie Mae names Johnson chief financial officer
WASHINGTON (AP) — Fannie Mae said Tuesday it named David Johnson
to serve as the mortgage giant’s chief financial officer and
executive vice president, beginning immediately. Johnson joins the
company from Hartford Financial Services Group, where he served as
chief financial officer and executive vice president. His
predecessor at Fannie Mae, Stephen Swad, left the company in August
and was temporarily replaced by David C. Hisey, formerly Fannie’s
senior vice president and controller.
First signs of consolidation in ethanol industry
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — The first salvo may have been fired
this week in a long-awaited shakeout for the U.S. ethanol industry.
VeraSun Energy Corp., the nation’s No. 2 ethanol producer,
announced it had received an unsolicited takeover bid one month
after seeking bankruptcy protection, and just hours after the
nation’s biggest producer, Poet LLC, said it was talking with other
companies about buyouts.