Inflation Risk Is Low, Fed Says (WSJ)
In a rare television interview, on CBS's "60 Minutes" news program, Mr. Bernanke warned that the economic recovery "may not be" self-sustaining. He said the chance of unemployment staying high for a protracted period was "the primary source of risk that we might have another slowdown in the economy." He also said "it's certainly possible" the Fed could expand a program to buy $600 billion in Treasury securities beyond the initial target it announced about a month ago. "It depends on the efficacy of the program. It depends on inflation. And finally it depends on how the economy looks," he said of the program aimed at lowering interest rates and stimulating growth.
Bank of America Says It Met Condition of TARP Exit (FT)
Bank of America has told US regulators that it has sold enough assets this year to meet the final condition that was set on its landmark plan to repay $45 billion in government bail-out funding...If BofA fails to satisfy the Federal Reserve Board, the lender will have to issue additional common shares, diluting its per-share earnings.
Bush Tax-Cut Deal With Jobless Aid Said to Be Near (NYT)
A day after the Senate rejected President Obama’s preferred tax plan, officials said the broad contours of a compromise were in focus. Rather than extending the tax rates only on income described by Democrats as middle class — up to $250,000 a year for couples and $200,000 for individuals — the deal would also keep the rates for higher earners, probably for two years. In return, Republicans said they would probably agree to extend jobless aid for the long-term unemployed.
Ireland Relies On 'Sugar Daddy' For Budget Support (Bloomberg)
The government will lay out details tomorrow of 6 billion euros ($7.9 billion) of spending cuts and tax increases. Cowen’s Fianna Fail party has a minority of seats in parliament and may need the backing of independents such as Healy-Rae and Michael Lowry. They have yet to declare support for the budget. “It is a real possibility that Ireland will not pass the proposed budget,” Mark Grant, managing director at Southwest Securities Inc. in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, said in a Nov. 30 e-mail. “Then another tailspin down for the euro and for European bank and sovereign debt is in the gun sights.”
Groupon Prankster Mason Not Joking in Spurning Google's $6 Billion Offer (Bloomberg)
Mason, Groupon’s chief executive officer, fretted that the sale would sap employee morale and alienate business clients, said two people with knowledge of the matter.
Assange: UFOs discussed in WikiLeaks files (FP)
Julian Assange: "Many weirdos email us about UFOs or how they discovered that they were the anti-christ whilst talking with their ex-wife at a garden party over a pot-plant. However, as yet they have not satisfied two of our publishing rules. 1) that the documents not be self-authored; 2) that they be original. However, it is worth noting that in yet-to-be-published parts of the cablegate archive there are indeed references to UFOs."
Ackman Will Back Borders Bid For Barnes And Noble (CNBC)
Ackman raised his stake in Borders Group to 37.3 percent and is prepared to finance an offer by Borders to buy Barnes & Noble, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission Monday. Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management's stake in the book retailer, as of Dec. 3, is up from the previously disclosed stake of 31.5 percent as of May 20.
Carlyle Closing In On 2010 IPO For Buy-Out Fund Capital (Bloomberg)
After participating in $16 billion of buyouts this year, more than any other private-equity firm, Carlyle plans to file IPO papers late in 2011, said people with knowledge of the matter. The stock sale may not occur until the following year
Madoff Trustee Goes After HSBC (WSJ)
In a statement, Mr. Picard said HSBC and a network of feeder funds in Europe, the Caribbean and Central America directed more than $8.9 billion in the fraudulent investment advisory business to Mr. Madoff's firm.