The ex-Bank of Israel governor would provide a conservative balance to incoming Chair Janet Yellen. He’d also boost the Fed’s global and crisis credibility. Making Fischer vice chair would be a savvy choice by the president. Yellen would be smart to encourage him to come aboard.
Former Goldman bigwig John Thornton will soon be sole chairman of the struggling $20 bln gold miner. In theory, an old-school M&A guru could help Barrick’s bosses avoid further bad deals. The worry, though, is that Thornton is already talking about more empire-building.
A deal reached between the House and Senate replaces $63 bln in planned cuts and slices another $23 bln from deficits – but it fails to deal with long-term issues. It’s as close as this dysfunctional Congress gets to compromise, just in time for a midterm election year.
Being bought by smaller rival Charter would create a debt-laden $100 bln cable giant. Turning the tables would require less borrowing and keep the cost savings. If nothing else, according to a Breakingviews calculator, the idea could point to a higher price for Time Warner Cable.
Tom Sandell is right that First has cheap stock and a bad track record. It should also take any good offer for Greyhound buses. But his proposed spin-off of other U.S. units looks less useful. The onus is now on First to defend its existing routemap for value creation.
Prices and rationing are generally effective tools for economic management. Not in healthcare. The U.S. pricing system is chaotic and British rationing has created a bureaucratic monster. But the two contrasting models are both valid – and could be made to work better.
It bans U.S. banks from outright prop trading and from London Whale-style hedging. But banks have plenty of room to mint coin, including being allowed to bet on government bonds. Wall Street might still complain. But the onus is on regulators to prove if banks step over the line.