Felix Salmon

Why can’t HP’s board get over Hurd?

November 6, 2010

Are HP’s directors physically incapable of letting l’affaire Mark Hurd drop? Not only are their fingerprints all over the huge WSJ article on the subject today and Adam Lashinsky’s less exhaustive article in Fortune, but they’ve also decided to give the original letter accusing Hurd of impropriety to a San Diego law firm representing HP shareholders, making it certain that the letter will eventually become public. And it stands to reason that someone on the HP board was responsible for the bizarre NY Post story a couple of weeks ago claiming that Hurd had an affair with a Sun executive.

Welcoming Argentina back

November 5, 2010

I spent a large chunk of this afternoon at a fascinating discussion about Argentina, keyed off a paper from veteran Latam economist Arturo Porzecanski, entitled “Should Argentina be Welcomed Back?”

The Volcker Rule under threat

November 5, 2010

Kevin Drawbaugh has obtained a letter from Spencer Bachus, the probable new chair of the Financial Services Committee, to Tim Geithner. And it turns out that Bachus is no fan of the Volcker Rule:

The good-news/bad-news employment report

November 5, 2010

The mathematics of the monthly payroll report don’t always make sense, since it’s actually two reports: the household report, covering employment and unemployment status, and the establishment report, showing the number of people being paid in various sectors of the economy.

The car-loan interest rate lottery

November 5, 2010

Remember Anacott Financial, the scam credit card website which would spit out a completely random number when you asked it for your credit score? It seems that Capital One has taken a leaf out of their book when it comes to offering car-loan rates. Go ahead and visit this page using various different browsers: I got rates as low as 2.3% in Firefox, 2.7% in Safari, and 3.1% in Safari for iPad. J-Walk has found minimum rates as high as 3.5% using Explorer, which corresponds with what Devin found — he was the guy originally shopping for a car loan, who wrote up his experiences at the Capital One website and sent them in to Consumerist.


November 5, 2010

Turmoil in microfinance continues — Humanosphere

Shaq’s Halloween Costume — Twitvid

Never get an overdraft. Even payday loans are cheaper — Nerdwallet

Coke from McDonalds contained nearly 30 percent more sugar than advertised — Wired

America’s failing monetary policy

November 5, 2010

Shahien Nasiripour has delivered a massive 4,000-word article on the Fed’s monetary policy, laying out with great clarity just who’s benefiting (big banks, corporations, and the U.S. Treasury) and who’s losing (the public at large, and especially retired savers and the unemployed).

Forbes’s labeled and unlabeled ad blogs

November 4, 2010

When I accused Forbes’s Lewis DVorkin of selling out his blogging platform, his lieutenant Andrea Spiegel responded in the comments, saying that the new adblogs would be “clearly labeled and transparent to all.” She added:

Navigating Treasury’s dreadful website

November 4, 2010

Bloomberg’s news reporters still haven’t worked out how to link to external websites, even the US Treasury: they say that “Geithner’s appointments calendar, updated through August on Treasury’s website,” shows an off-the-record meeting with Jon Stewart, but they don’t link to it.