Summit Notebook

Exclusive outtakes from industry leaders

Five weeks: It’s an eternity in the world of politics

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By Christopher Doering carper

Five weeks:  It may not be a lot of time for many people, but with the pivotal mid-term elections looming on Nov. 2 Delaware Senator Tom Carper said five weeks is an eternity for Democrats to use to turn the tide in their favor.

“Today, five weeks a lot happens. A lot of minds change in five weeks,” Carper, a self-proclaimed “optimist”, told the Reuters Washington Summit.

“What we have to do is to be able to remind people if there is some good news here in the next five weeks of what that is and get people to focus on the future.”

Carper, a former Delaware governor, said there is a slew of economic data coming out between now and the election that Democrats could embrace. He pointed to another unemployment report next week, and several more weekly jobless claims.

Health reform…big in Europe too

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U.S. healthcare reform is top of everybody’s agenda right now — but Barack Obama isn’t the only government leader chasing a new deal.

“If you are talking healthcare reform, it’s our daily life in Europe,” Novo Nordisk CEO Lars Sorensen told the Reuters Health Summit in New York.

AUDIO – More money, more money, more money…

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The U.S. government is spending a LOT of money these days.

We generally don’t go for the all-CAPS version of words, but in this case, it seemed appropriate. Every day we’re seeing new multibillion-dollar programs being rolled out of Washington, D.C. for everything from bank bailouts to auto companies programs.

But, according to Wick Moorman, chief executive of Norfolk Southern Corp, much more infrastructure spending still needs to be done for the nation’s railroads.

Video – Building for the future

The U.S. is expected to spend an extra $28 billion to upgrade the nation’s bridges and roads and one manufacturer is hopeful some of those dollars will flow their way.

Ruben Ramirez, Reuters, Rock Hill, South Carolina.

SOUNDBITES: Garth McGillewie, Director, Terex Hydra Platforms Steve Hueser, Director, Terex Rock Hill MORE INFO: The latest report card on the nation’s bridges and roads gives them a “D.” The latest U.S. economic stimulus plan includes billions of dollars for upgrading the country’s infrastructure and one manufacturer is hopeful some of those dollars will flow their way. 

Obama victory could help Gulf economies, Kuwaiti banker says

A Barack Obama victory in the U.S. presidential election on Tuesday could bring much-needed good news to the Gulf Arab region, the chairman of Kuwait’s banking association told a Reuters summit.
Gulf Arab stock exchanges have tumbled this year and its economies are forecast to slow as the price of oil, its main export, drops.
The prospect of conflict involving nearby Iran is often cited as a risk factor for investing in the oil-exporting region.
“Maybe the pressure that is on this region in terms of U.S.-Iran tension might ease up,” said Abdulmajeed al-Shatti, who is also chairman of Commercial Bank of Kuwait, the chairman country’s third-largest lender. “Obama has indicated he would engage Iran and if the U.S. wants to change Iran, it has to engage.”

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