Martin's Feed
Jan 28, 2010

Zimbabwe’s PM asks investors, donors to return

DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) – Zimbabwe’s Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai said he believed the process that led to creation of a unity government last February is irreversible and that it is time for Western donors and investors to return to the country.

Speaking to a small group of journalists at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Tsvangirai said he expects a referendum on a new constitution around October of this year, leading to elections in 2011.

Jan 28, 2010

U.S. cap and trade must take back seat: executives

DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) – Business executives and policy officials said a U.S. cap and trade scheme must give way to a clean energy law, after U.S. President Barack Obama favored “green jobs” in his State of the Union Address.

Cap and trade works by limiting carbon emissions from polluters, which then pass on the extra cost to consumers. That model is proving a hard sell during a slow U.S. economic recovery.

Jan 28, 2010

Cap and trade must take back seat: execs

DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) – Business executives and policy officials said a U.S. cap and trade scheme must give way to a clean energy law, after U.S. President Barack Obama favored “green jobs” in his State of the Union Address.

Cap and trade works by limiting carbon emissions from polluters, which then pass on the extra cost to consumers. That model is proving a hard sell during a slow U.S. economic recovery.

Jan 28, 2010

U.S. cap and trade must take back seat-execs

DAVOS, Switzerland, Jan 28 (Reuters) – Business executives and policy officials said a U.S. cap and trade scheme must give way to a clean energy law, after U.S. President Barack Obama favoured "green jobs" in his State of the Union Address.

Cap and trade works by limiting carbon emissions from polluters, which then pass on the extra cost to consumers. That model is proving a hard sell during a slow U.S. economic recovery.

Obama said on Wednesday he wanted to create more clean energy jobs and supported a "comprehensive energy and climate bill" in the Senate. But he didn’t mention cap and trade.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a climate bill last year, featuring a cap and trade scheme, and is awaiting the passage of a similar Senate draft.

"I don’t think that the House bill that passed will even be considered this year in the Senate," said Tom Donahue, President of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, noting that it was an election year and there were so many other priorities, including Obama’s latest jobs plan.

"We are in search of a solid domestic bill, whether its cap and trade or cap and carbon tax or however these things are put together. We just don’t want a bill like the one that came out of the House," he told Reuters on Thursday on the sidelines of a business and policy summit in the Davos Swiss ski resort.

The industry looby group ran a high-profile campaign against the House climate bill, losing some members as a result, but even businesses with big investments in green technology are now calling for a backing from cap and trade for now.

"There is so much on the plates of politicians and regulators in the United States it is hard for me to envisage a strong movement to have a cap and trade system in place in the next eight or nine months," said John Rice, a vice chairman of General Electric Co <GE.N>, who also serves as chief executive of its GE Technology Infrastructure division.

GE is a top wind turbine manufacturer and also has investments in solar.

"I would worry if we tried to push it through in this environment we would end up with a very incomplete solution, and I think it is more important that we are thoughtful about it and if we do it, we do it correctly," Rice said.

"You can see in the U.S. we are getting a backlash in a lot of areas and I just don’t think it would be helpful."

The House bill passed a scheme which would force polluters to buy carbon emissions permits from an economy-wide quota which would be ratcheted down, to drive carbon cuts.

"It’s the dumbest idea," said Timothy Wirth, former U.S. senator and now President of the U.N. Foundation, on the idea of forcing businesses to buy emissions permits.

He expected a modified scheme to pass eventually which may apply only to utilities without enforced permit auctions.

In the near term, analysts expected the United States to pass a slimmer energy bill without cap and trade, focused instead on targets for renewables and nuclear power.

"I do not believe that there will be legislation on climate any time soon in the U.S., but they will address clean energy and that will have very good benefits for the climate," said Bjorn Stigson, president of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, a green business lobby.

(Reporting by Martin Howell and Gerard Wynn, Editing by Stella Dawson) ((gerard.wynn@reuters.com; +44 207 542 2302))

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Jan 27, 2010

Business warns regulation may crimp recovery

DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) – Global business leaders warned Western governments on Wednesday that a populist crackdown on the financial industry could crimp a fragile recovery from the worst recession since the 1930s.

The worried response to U.S. President Barack Obama’s plans to curb big banks and a British assault on bankers’ pay came as 2,500 business leaders and policy makers met at the annual World Economic Forum in the Swiss ski resort of Davos.

Oct 5, 2009

HP sees aggressive PC holiday pricing

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Hewlett-Packard Co <HPQ.N>, the world’s No. 1 maker of personal computers, expects very aggressive pricing in the U.S. PC market in the coming holiday season.

“I think we will see a lot of aggressive pricing around ‘Black Friday,’” said Todd Bradley, who is in charge of HP’s PC business as executive vice president of the personal systems group. “Some of it will be by us, some by our competitors.”

Apr 28, 2009
via Summit Notebook

SEC’s Schapiro shows little interest in Cox’s pet projects

Photo

When he was chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Christopher Cox got slammed by many for failing to protect investors during the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, including missing Bernie Madoff’s massive Ponzi scheme. Now, to add insult to injury, his successor is showing little interest in his pet projects concerning corporate disclosure and accounting standards, and questioning whether at least one of them is even appropriate.

Cox’s interest in forcing listed companies to file financial reports using technology that makes it easier for investors to read and analyze the data became almost an obsession during his time at the SEC from August 2005 until this past January. Indeed, the SEC voted through a rule to require 500 of the largest public companies to begin filing their reports with the technology known as XBRL, or extensible business reporting language, by the middle of this year, with the rest instructed to comply over the following two years.