- IPhone 3G S Review Roundup – PCWorldA lot of good things are being said about this new phone, available starting Friday.
- Beaked, Bird-like Dinosaur Tells Story Of Finger Evolution – Science Daily“Scientists have discovered a unique beaked, plant-eating dinosaur in China. The finding, they say, demonstrates that theropod, or bird-footed, dinosaurs were more ecologically diverse in the Jurassic period than previously thought, and offers important evidence about how the three-fingered hand of birds evolved from the hand of dinosaurs.”
- Fitch to keep sovereign debt rating unchanged | The Japan Times OnlineAA- for having nearly 200% debt to GDP. OK.
- Household financial assets lowest since ’04 | The Japan Times OnlineThis is a global phenomenon.
- Goldman’s Blankfein issues apology as bank prepares to repay $10bn – TelegraphThese guys are making all the right noises. Blankfein has been the most contrite of all the big bank CEOs. He said: “We know that we have an explicit contract with our shareholders to be responsible stewards of their capital . . . we regret that we participated in the market euphoria and failed to raise a responsible voice.”
- King calls for banks to be ‘cut down to size’ – GuardianWith Mervyn King taking a stance against too big to fail and reforms already in motion in the U.S., Darling needs to get onboard.
- “An Interview with Paul Samuelson” – Economist’s View
- In reform, more of the same – Marshall AuerbackThis line sums up his view: “As with so much of the Obama administration, great-sounding words, but nothing in the way of substantive change.”
- JPMorgan, 4 Banks Repay $54.7 Billion in Rescue Funds – Bloomberg“JPMorgan Chase & Co. and four of the nation’s largest banks repaid $54.7 billion to the U.S. Treasury’s bailout fund in a step toward ridding themselves of government restrictions on lending and pay.”
- U.S. Banks Decline After S&P Cuts 18 Ratings on Regulation – BloombergAlso, large banks called Tier 1 FHC will need more capital. “U.S. lenders slid after Standard & Poor’s reduced its credit ratings on 18 U.S. banks, including Wells Fargo & Co., Capital One Financial Corp. and KeyCorp, citing tighter regulation and increased market volatility. Keycorp dropped as much as 13 percent.”
- Eddie Bauer files for Chapter 11, to be sold to Rainier“According to the court filing, the outdoor apparel retailer is planning to sell nearly all its assets to Rainier Holdings LLC. Its board has also received a limited guarantee from two affiliates of CCMP Capital Advisors LLC on some of the buyer’s payment obligations. The company blamed its debt load, citing concern it might not be able to comply with conditions attached to its $225 million senior term loan facility..”
- The Case for California Defaulting, Even If It Won’t – Paul KedroskyCalifornia is insolvent, but it has ways of making payments which companies do not. Therefore, it will not be declared insolvent until it is deeply so.
- iPhone OS 3.0 Arrives Today: What You Should Know – MashableTethering, cut/copy/paste. A lot of new features on this one! Very nice.
- Mega-bonuses could stage a quick comeback – Telegraph“The outrage over supersized banker bonuses has barely died down but the stage is already being set for the return of the mega-payouts. It’ll feel icky and almost surely reignite the fury of taxpayers and lawmakers.”
- Swan Song: First he was very famous, now he’s very rich. But Nassim Taleb is still wrong. | The Big MoneyInteresting anti-Taleb take. For my money, catastrophe insurance a la Taleb is warranted at specific times when markets become extremely overbought.
- President Obama’s Regulatory Reforms Announcement: A Viewer’s Guide- Simon Johnson1230 PM is when we find out if Obama wants real reform or a cosmetic dusting. Simon Johnson provides a guide to what we should anticipate.
- FT.com – Latvia: A lat to worry aboutWonderfully long and comprehensive article
Distraction of the Day
A friend with roots in Belarus sent me this link saying ‘Russian hip hop is finally sounding good.’ (Hat tip Raisa) Enjoy.