FDIC Seeking Private Investors

August 25, 2009

Photo by I Busca

Photo by I Busca

With fewer larger banks unwilling to purchase troubled banks, the FDIC is now looking to private investors to bail out these banks. Private investors recently extended funds to CIT Bank to keep it from bankruptcy filings.

Since private investors tend to cut costs by eliminating jobs, unions are against private investors getting involved with acquiring distressed banks.

The involvement of private investors would relieve the U.S. of their intervention in some of the failed banks earlier in this economic crisis. Warren Buffet recently made a statement that the U.S. “must address the massive amounts of monetary medicine that have been pumped into the financial system and now pose threats to the world’s largest economy and its currency.”

The federal deficit reached an all-time monthly high of $180.7 billion for the month of July 2009.

August 25, 2009

Nervous shoppers send July Sales South

Restaurants at Risk for Identity Theft

August 24, 2009

Photo by Jay Lopez

Photo by Jay Lopez

Hackers recently targeted 7 Eleven stores and Hannaford Brothers customers for identity theft and secured information from 130 million credit card and debit card accounts. Fortunately, Albert Gonzalez of Miami was arrested. Gonzalez apparently cooperated with federal investigators on other cases of identity theft in the past. This is the largest case of identity theft so far.

Restaurants often fail to update their computer viruses and other security systems. If you are an owner of a restaurant, it would be wise to investigate your system to make sure it is updated. Since identity theft continues to be a problem in the U.S., you as a business owner cannot afford to be negligent in this area.

These hackers used a device to tap into wireless processing and read the customer accounts as customers entered the stores.

Asian Countries Showing Signs of Economic Recovery

August 20, 2009

Photo by Jonathan N

Photo by Jonathan N

Japan, China South Korea, Indonesia, Singapore, and Hong Kong are all reporting quarterly growth for the first time in a year. Blaine Harden, of the Washington Post Foreign Service reports on August 17, 2009 that the growth is due to “a spurt in manufacturing, an easing of credit, and the health of Asian banks that were largely unscathed by the U.S. and European debt crisis.”

Germany and France are also showing growth, but not to the degree of the Asian countries. The U. S. on the other hand suffered a decline in growth for the second quarter as the Federal Reserve will pull back its intervention in the economic recovery soon.

CIT Working to Strengthen Management

August 14, 2009

Photo by Lisa Gagne

Photo by Lisa Gagne

As CIT was forced to pledge most of its assets to secure a $1 billion dollar note, the company has also agreed to “strengthen its management and risk oversight, submit a plan to raise capital and fix its loan loss accounting,” reported Colin Barr, Senior Writer for Fortune in his August 13, 2009 article.

This means CIT must review the salaries of top executives to insure that their high salaries are not causing the company’s financial failure. Colin Barr also note that CEO Jeff Peek “who has made $36 million since 2004 for leading the company to the brink of bankruptcy” signed the agreement with the FDIC.

In view of the securing of financing for CIT, there are still questions as to whether CIT will be able to continue, considering the fact that CIT has made its money by “borrowing money at low rates and lending it out at higher rates.”

Retailers now have money for Christmas inventory, but some of the retailers who need this money are at risk of bankruptcy, themselves.

Bankruptcy Still Possible for CIT Bank

August 12, 2009

Photo by Mario Hornik

Photo by Mario Hornik

Although CIT bondholders will not push for bankruptcy, it is still possible for CIT Bank who is looking for the final $1 billion dollars by August 17, 2009 in order to pay a note that is due.

CIT is looking for ninety percent of the money in order to avoid the filing. This is a very tense situation for retailers who need factoring loans from CIT in order to buy Christmas inventory. If they do not get the loans or look for alternative financing, they may go out of business.

CIT is trying to restructure the company by selling off some of its assets. Restructuring has become a popular way for businesses to avoid bankruptcy in the economic crisis in the U. S., since refinancing is unavailable.

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More consumers Using Credit Cards and Debit Cards

August 10, 2009

Photo by Nazreth

Photo by Nazreth

British consumers today are using credit cards and debit cards more because of the economic crisis. There has been a 10% increase over last year. Therefore, if you are not accepting credit cards at your retail store or at your website, you stand to lose business. Despite the admonitions to spend less money, some consumers continue to be impulse shoppers.

There are wireless and countertop models to choose from and there is even a wireless product to utilize while on the go. Nurit, Omni, and Verifone are the most popular brands to choose from. Depending on the volume you process, there is a product to meet your needs.

If you do not accept credit or debit cards, customers will go to someone who does. Although some may pay in cash as a last resort, you cannot afford to take the chance that you may attract someone who prefers to pay in cash.

Accepting credit cards can increase your profits and while we are experiencing hard times and earning less money as a result, accepting credit cards and debit cards can ensure business profits.

Identity theft – Consumers and Institutions are being More Proactive

August 1, 2009

Photo by duckycards

Photo by duckycards

Institutions and consumers are becoming wiser in protecting themselves from identity theft. institutions are notifying consumers earlier about their information and consumers are now checking their records for triggers relating to possible identity theft. Unfortunately, Jeffrey Roman of Bank Info Security reports that “Because of ID theft (and the current recession), credit card cancellations and denied credit are up to 70%, an all-time high. ” In view of these problems, consumers are finding it difficult to get negative information cleared from their accounts.

Linda Foley, Founder and Chairman of the ITRC recommends that institutions and business owners “Authenticate the people you’re interacting with,” she says. “Look at your company and try to evaluate all areas a thief could possibly take advantage of. Plug those holes and develop a written policy for the staff. We have to find better ways to authenticate, which will then allow someone to say, ‘I can show you that is not me.'”

This is not a problem which will be resolved in the near future, but both consumers business owners, and institutions must continue to be more proactive in protecting their data.