Deputy head of top news, Americas
Claudia's Feed
Feb 9, 2011
via Reuters Investigates

The hurricane guessing game

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Unpredictable weather is making life difficult for insurers — see today’s special report: ”Extreme weather batters the insurance industry.”

By Ben Berkowitz

Every year forecasters at Colorado State University take their most educated guess as to how the next year’s hurricane season will unfold. It always draws headlines, but as history shows, that initial “best guess” is usually somewhat far off the mark.

Feb 4, 2011
via Reuters Investigates

Jamie Dimon: Good banker? Bad banker?

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The U.S. mortgage business is a “mess” in need of overhaul, JPMorgan Chief Executive Jamie Dimon reckons.

(See our special report on Dimon today: “Jamie Dimon wants some R-E-S-P-E-C-T”)

Jan 28, 2011
via Reuters Investigates

WikiLeaks, OpenLeaks, GreenLeaks and more leaks

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A Reuters exclusive details the emergence of two anti-corporate, WikiLeaks-style websites in Europe, both called GreenLeaks. The sites promise to leak confidential documents regarding environmental abuses by a host of industries.

The report by Mark Hosenball also reveals the rise of other possible WikiLeaks copycats that would focus on specialized topics or regions — from Russia and the European Union bureaucracy to international trade, the pharmaceutical industry and the Balkans.

Jan 27, 2011
via Reuters Investigates

In Gatsby country, tea and red ink

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Located just east of New York City and the setting for F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel “The Great Gatsby,” Nassau County makes an unexpected backdrop for a fiscal crisis. It is one of America’s wealthiest counties and, according to Forbes, it has the highest concentration of affluent neighborhoods in the United States.

But on Wednesday, New York state took control of Nassau’s finances, dealing a huge blow to Tea Party Republican County Executive Edward Mangano and a black eye for the Tea Party, the grassroots movement built around the core principles of constitutionally limited government, free-market ideology and low taxes. The county, which has vowed to battle the takeover in court, must now come up with a new budget.

Jan 20, 2011
via Reuters Investigates

Boeing’s extreme outsourcing

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Today’s special report from Kyle Peterson takes an in-depth look at the development of Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner. Boeing went further than ever before in outsourcing much of the work on the plane, upsetting its unionized workers in the Seattle area. This graphic shows why.

So what’s the result?

A revolutionary, light-weight aircraft that is nearly three years behind its delivery schedule.

Jan 8, 2011

Portuguese journalist killed in New York hotel

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Prominent Portuguese journalist Carlos Castro, 65, was beaten to death and mutilated at a luxury Manhattan hotel on Friday and a young man reported to be his companion was being held at a psychiatric hospital.

Local media quoted police sources as saying Castro had been castrated and was left lying in a pool of blood. The medical examiner’s office did not confirm that but said the cause of death was trauma to the head and strangulation.

Jan 7, 2011
via Reuters Investigates

Somebody’s been making money on Ford

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Here’s a line from our special report on Ford from Detroit today, by Bernie Woodall and Kevin Krolicki, who spent some quality time with Bill Ford earlier this week.

A $100,000 investment in the company’s stock at the bottom in late 2008 — when its cross-town rivals GM and Chrysler were nearing government bailouts — would be worth $1.8 million today.

Jan 5, 2011
via Reuters Investigates

Congratulations to Murray Waas

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Murray Waas is picking up the prestigious Barlett & Steele award today in Phoenix for his special report on health insurers dropping patients after they were diagnosed with breast cancer.

The Reynolds Center is holding a panel discussion with Murray and silver medal winner John Fauber of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, which will be streamed live here.

Jan 5, 2011
via Reuters Investigates

Solar energy vs wildlife

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Sarah McBride reports on brewing battles between environmentalists in her special report: “With solar power, it’s Green vs. Green.”

It turns out the perfect place to build a big solar plant is often also the perfect place for a tortoise or a fox to live. This means developers of large-scale solar plants are running into legal challenges from people who one would expect to be natural allies of alternative energy providers.

Jan 3, 2011
via Reuters Investigates

Let’s be ethical, economists say

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Last month’s special report “For some professors, disclosure is academic” has been making waves in the academic world, as this story shows:

Economists urge AEA to adopt ethics code: letter

By Kristina Cooke

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Almost three hundred economists have signed a letter to the American Economic Association “strongly” urging it to adopt a code of ethics requiring disclosure of potential conflicts of interests.