Summers Faces Key ‘No’ Votes If Picked For Fed (WSJ)
At least three Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee are expected to oppose Lawrence Summers if he is nominated to become Federal Reserve chairman, setting up a razor-thin vote to determine who will lead the central bank at a critical moment for its easy-money policies. Democrats hold a two-vote majority on the 22-member panel, so the loss of three Democrats would make it impossible for Mr. Summers to advance to the full Senate for a confirmation vote without the backing of some of the 10 Republicans. No Republican has publicly expressed support so far for any potential White House nominee for Fed chief, giving President Barack Obama little margin for error.
New Jersey’s Dr. Joel Ross Is Added to SAC Probe Roster (WSJ)
Joel Ross, an advocate for the use of experimental Alzheimer’s drugs, was one of the doctors who allegedly passed confidential information to a former trader at SAC, according to people familiar with the matter. Dr. Ross’s alleged involvement was described in an amended indictment unsealed Aug. 22 that expanded the Manhattan U.S. attorney’s allegations against Mathew Martoma, a former portfolio manager with SAC unit CR Intrinsic Investors. Dr. Ross, 57 years old, was described as “Doctor-2″ in the indictment, but people familiar with the case confirmed his identity. Dr. Ross’s identity hasn’t previously been reported. Prosecutors allege Dr. Ross provided Mr. Martoma with confidential information on the progress of an Alzheimer’s drug trial. Dr. Ross hasn’t been charged with a crime. Calls to Dr. Ross’s office were returned by an attorney, Alexander Novak, who said he had been representing the doctor for 22 years. Mr. Novak said he didn’t know whether Dr. Ross consulted with Mr. Martoma or whether he was Doctor-2 in the indictment.
U.S. Employers Add 169,000 Jobs as Hiring Pace Slows (WSJ)
The August jobs gain was slightly lower than the average monthly gain of 184,000 over the prior 12 months and the 175,000 new jobs forecast by economists. The private sector added 152,000 jobs in August and government increased employment by 17,000.
Canadian Job Creation Triples Forecasts in August (Bloomberg)
Canadian employment rose three times faster than economists forecast in August on gains in part-time work and service industries. Employment increased by 59,200 and the jobless rate fell to 7.1 percent from 7.2 percent, Statistics Canada said today in Ottawa. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg News projected a 20,000 job increase and an unchanged jobless rate, according to the median forecasts.
Man finds dead snake in 18-pack of Bud Light (NYDN)
A Houston man was stunned when an 18 pack of Bud Light he purchased for a party last week held an additional item — a frosty, cold dead snake. At first, Marcus Forson thought he was the victim of a clever prank by his wife. “I thought she was playing a joke on me and she had it inside the box,” Forson told local station KTRK. “Like a rubber snake.” But upon closer examination, including a generous whiff of the dead snake’s pungent stench, it became clear that the stowaway reptile was the real deal. “There’s no way I was going to drink the beer. It stunk bad,” Forson explained. “The snake was dead. The snake was ice cold. It’s kind of shrunk up and the eyes are missing out of it.” Forson scooped the snake out into a bag and showed it to party guests. It became a talking point and he apparently relished telling others about his slithery find. “Luckily, it didn’t come out of the box and bite anybody,” Forson said. “But it was dead, so we basically — it was entertaining. We had a good time.” Forson said he told Anheuser-Busch, the producers of Bud Light, about the incident. The company apologized and reimbursed Forson, who holds no hard feelings against those behind his favorite beer.
Indians Sell Scrap Gold at Unprecedented Discounts as Price Rises (WSJ)
Gold is trading at near-record levels in India, pushed up largely due to the country’s weak currency, but dealers are picking up castoff gold jewelry at unprecedented discounts amid a rush among sellers to take advantage of the high prices ahead of traditional high-demand season. Living as they do in the world’s largest gold-consuming nation, a lot of Indians have stashes of gold jewelry that they can convert into currency when it is wanted or needed, and that means that a lot of people are in a position to liquidate the precious metal when prices peak. According to traders, the amount of gold landing on dealers’ and jewelers’ shop counters has tripled compared with average volumes. But while sellers are anxious to unload their trinkets at the best prices possible, traders said sales are thus far negligible, as customers are holding off on making purchases given that recent measures to reverse the local currency’s depreciation may push the rupee-denominated price of gold down. “Everyone in the market seems to have turned into a seller,” said Jitendra Kantilal Jain, owner of Jugraj Kantilal and Co., a prominent Mumbai-based scrap-gold dealer.
G20 says economy recovering but no end to crisis yet (Reuters)
The Group of 20 said on Friday the global economy was improving but it was too early to declare an end to crisis with emerging markets facing increasing volatility.
Moody’s Raises Outlook on German Banking System to Stable (Bloomberg)
The upgrade to stable from negative “recognizes that following a year of reduced crisis-related losses and improved capital strength, German banks are now more able to withstand an adverse market environment,” Moody’s said in a statement today. “Capital levels will further strengthen, even though asset quality will deteriorate mildly over the next 12 to 18 months as banks work through their stock of impaired legacy investments.”
Ford’s Mulally Says He’ll Stay CEO At Least Through 2014 (Bloomberg)
“I plan to continue to serve as Ford’s president and CEO until at least the end of 2014,” to remain “absolutely laser focused” on earnings growth, Mulally wrote in an e-mail to Bloomberg News today. “I love serving Ford and will continue serving Ford,” Mulally said in an interview from Berlin with Anna Edwards on Bloomberg Television’s “Countdown.”
Taxi sex couple cause carnage (Mirror)
It’s tough enough to keep your eyes on the road in rush hour traffic, but one randy couple in China nearly caused a pile-up when they started having sex in a taxi. The pair began intimate in the back of the cab on a highway in Shanghai, much to the shock – and – delight – of their fellow road users. One motorist decided to not just watch, but film the pair at it – much to the taxi driver’s anger – and admitted he saw a lot of near misses on the road. “I was in the lane next to them and I could see them kissing and pawing each other to start with,” he said. “They soon got carried away and started having sex right there in the taxi so I decided to film it. “I saw at least ten near misses as drivers swerved to get a better look or took their eyes off the road.’ One Chinese police officer was left less than enamoured by the pair’s ‘dangerous stunt’, but also laid blame at the door of the taxi driver, who he believes should have concentrated on basic road safety. “Their driver should have stopped and told them to get out,” he said. “They weren’t even wearing seat belts.”