The Wall Street Journal: Investors are becoming more cautious with their money – particularly, after the US hedge fund Ospraie Management, based on New York’s exclusive Park Avenue – had its main fund fully liquidate its assets as result of huge losses from bets placed on commodities. The level of cautiousness by investors has naturally, increased. This Journal article points out towards the fact that some investors involved in what are known as “Funds of funds” (an investment strategy of holding a portfolio of other investment funds rather than investing directly in shares, bonds or other securities) are demanding their money back and heading for the exits. The requests may ramp up in the weeks ahead. [WSJ]
Bloomberg: Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), seems to have been unaware of how close to a favorable ruling the company was in its antitrust charges case with the European Union last year. The EU court ruling took effect on Sept. 17, 2007 where the votes were closely divided 7-6 against Microsoft. The Redmond, Washington-based co. didn’t know about the divided vote until May. This proves that EU courts aren’t a rubber stamp for EU’s commission decisions – said Thomas Jestaedt, a lawyer at law firm Jones Day in Brussels who has argued at EU courts. He also added that “this fact gives some hope to companies facing the court in the future”. Microsoft had sought to overturn a $719 million fine from EU courts, stemming from a 2004 decision that it failed to offer rivals access to some data. [Bloomberg]
CNNMoney: Silver State Bank where Andrew McCain, son of Republican presidential nominee John McCain was a member of the bank’s board, has been shut down by Nevada regulators. This marks the 11th failure this year of a federally insured bank. Silver State Bank had 12 operational branches in Nevada and Arizona as well as loan offices in seven other states. The FDIC estimates its resolution could cost the deposit insurance fund between $450 million and $550 million. There were about $20 million in uninsured deposits held in roughly 500 accounts at Silver State that potentially exceeded the insurance limit, the FDIC said. [CNNMoney]
EETimes: SBD International Inc. (SBDL.PK) a Nevada based Corporation today announced its plans in building a thin-film solar panel plant in Florida to serve the Caribbean and South American markets. CEO C. Michael Nurse stated, “We have signed a Letter Of Intent with TGI/Solar Power Gr (TSPG) to be a licensee of their thin film solar panel product.” The plant, which will be located in Palm Beach County – is expected to be completed in approx. 18 months and will employ over 200 skilled workers. Many States offer tax incentives or refunds for use of solar panels on residences or business. Florida offers up to $20,000 per residential use and up to $100,000 for commercial use. [EETimes]
The Wall Street Journal: Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE) are once again bound for center-stage this weekend. The Treasury Department is working out the final details on a plan designed to shore up both GSEs. No specific details are yet available. However, the plan may involve the government injecting capital into Fannie and Freddie. There is also the possibility of the Federal Housing Finance Agency putting the two co.’s under conservatorship. If that happens, it will represent perhaps – the most significant intervention by the government in the financial industry. In addition, Treasury’s plan includes a top-level management shakeup at both companies. [WSJ]
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