Wilbur Ross: Ireland Will Overcome Problems In Two Years (CNBC)
Ireland passed a very tough budget, cutting the minimum wage, and it now has in place a bailout by the European Union and the International Monetary Fund, showing the government’s determination to solve the problem the country faces, Ross said. “Ireland has a very specific problem, we think they’ll overcome it in a couple of years,” he added.
Fed Signals Stronger Economy Won't Slow $600 Billion Stimulus (Bloomberg)
The Federal Open Market Committee said yesterday after its final meeting of 2010 that growth is “insufficient to bring down unemployment” and inflation has “continued to trend lower.” U.S. central bankers affirmed a plan to buy $600 billion of bonds through June and renewed their pledge for an “extended period” of low interest rates.
Spain Rating Put On Review By Moody's (Bloomberg)
Spain’s credit rating may be cut from Aa1, Moody’s Investors Service said, as the government prepares its final bond sale of the year tomorrow amid concern it may follow Greece and Ireland in seeking a bailout. Spain has to raise 170 billion euros ($226 billion) next year, while refinancing needs for its regions total 30 billion euros and for banks around 90 billion euros, Moody’s estimates. “Spain’s substantial funding requirements, not only for the sovereign but also for the regional governments and the banks, make the country susceptible to further episodes of funding stress,” Kathrin Muehlbronner, an analyst at Moody’s, said in a report today.
Senate Sets Wednesday Vote On Tax Cuts (Reuters)
While the Senate neared a rare bipartisan vote on the bill to renew all Bush-era income tax breaks and add provisions to stimulate the economy, House Democrats mulled ways to pull back on some of the measure's tax breaks for the wealthy.
Tax Deal Shaping 2012 GOP Campaign (WSJ)
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney have both come out sharply against the measure, which President Barack Obama hammered out last week with Senate Republican leaders. Both cite the deal's price tag, with Mr. Romney saying it will heap billions more onto the nation's debt load. Supporting the package are former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, all of whom praise the deal as good for the economy and the only way to spare Americans the jolt of a sudden tax increase that otherwise would take effect on Jan. 1.
No Funeral, Just Cremation For Mark Madoff (NYP)
"He is going to be cremated at the family's wishes," the source said, hours after Mark's body was released by the Medical Examiner's Office to a Manhattan funeral home. "No services, no viewing. The family doesn't want a viewing."
Goldman Seeks New Top Asia Manager (FT)
GS is seeking an executive to run its day-to-day operations in Asia even as the bank struggles to find a new role in its New York headquarters for the region’s chairman, Michael Evans.
Icahn To Buy Dynegy For $665 Million (WSJ)
Dynegy Inc. said its board has agreed to be acquired by Icahn Enterprises LP for about $665 million and billions in assumed debt. Shares of the power producer climbed 2.2% to $5.57 premarket, above the $5.50-a-share offer price. The per-share bid from Icahn is 10% higher than an earlier bid by Blackstone Group LP that failed to win shareholder support amid intense opposition from investor Carl Icahn and hedge-fund operator Seneca Capital, another major holder.
Companies Assail Whistleblower Bounties (WSJ)
In a letter to the SEC, top legal officials at companies such as Delta Air Lines Inc., FedEx Corp., Gap Inc. and Pfizer Inc. told the agency that proposed rules for an enhanced whistleblower system required under the Dodd-Frank Act will undermine internal compliance programs already in place at companies. The proposed rules "disincent employees from looking for ways to improve or correct corporate behaviors, and incent them to find ways to profit from corporate wrongdoing," according to the letter, which is set to be released Wednesday. "Fraudulent misconduct, the bane of good compliance systems, then becomes the gold mine."
Jeffrey Gundlach: The US Can't Handle Rising Interest Rates (PC via BI)
“I don’t think the economy can take much of a rate rise above 3.5 percent….The economy, society and government are fueled by debt.”