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Opening Bell: 9.29.08

World markets fall as US bailout seen taking time (AP)
Look, we're going to pass it, alright. Just hold your horses, and stop it with these nightly selloffs. We're spending like $1 trillion of our own money here. And it's pretty much a done deal. And after that the markets will be stablized. Pressuring us into passing it faster by selling off each night isn't going to help. Unless. Unless the market is saying that even a bailout won't help matters. Eh. Nah.
Credit Crunch Squeezes Franchisees (WSJ)
Sorta gotta feeling that the "Credit Crunch Squeezes _________" article could be a staple of business journalism for a while. You can pretty much fill in the blank with whomever you like: shipbuilders, farmer, sommeliers, basketball players, whoever. Anyway, today its franchisees, of all people.
Merkel's Bavarian Allies Lose 50-Year Grip on Power (Bloomberg)
A little politics note that has nothing to do with the two candidates here: Angela Merke's conservative majority in Germany has suffered a major blow, losing its grip on parliament. The news comes as the German economy (and the rest of Europe) pretty much goes to the tank. All around the world, parties in change are going to get whacked.
2008 Presidential Election Winner (Intrade)
And on the domestic politics front, Barack Obama now holds decisive leads in the polls and in the Intrade market he's up almost 60-40. So, two questions then: What's the October surprise, and how does he inevitably blow it? And if you really love the "Mac" here's William Kristol on how he can revive his campaign. We're not convinced that the answer is really "straight talk".

Goldman seeks to buy up to $50bn in assets (FT)
Goldman Sachs, a commercial bank, is hoping to acquire $50 billion in assets from other ailing banks. As part of its plans, the company plans to shift billions to its "Utah industrial loan corporation", a bank it already operates there (Note: when Wal-Mart tried [unsuccessfully] to get into banking, they were seeking to become a Utal industrial loan corp.). Anyway, Goldman has one, and now it's looking to expand it big time.
AIG looks to sell 15 units (FT)
New AIG will be a sad shell of its former self. But of course that's how it should be, since really, AIG might've already been blown off the earth, had it not been for the grace of the US taxpayer. Evidently, New AIG will be anchored by its international life insurance unit and its US pension businesses. The rest can be chopped up and sold ASAP, so the company can pay back its $85 billion loan to US.
Is Purchasing $700 billion of Toxic Assets the Best Way to Recapitalize the Financial System? No! It is Rather a Disgrace and Rip-Off Benefitting only the Shareholders and Unsecured Creditors of Banks (Nouriel Roubini)
With a title like that, why do you need a post? No, no, no, but seriously. Roubini makes his case why, well... you've read the title. No need to reiterate.
InBev shareholders back Anheuser-Busch takeover (Reuters)
And that deal is one step closer. Pretty soon, there won't be many independent breweries anymore in this little ol' USA of ours. Funny then to come across this blog post about the Yudngling family. Interesting story.