Monday, October 20, 2008

Linens and mervyns victims of the credit and economic crisis

I've been gone for some time. While the closing of stores such as CrazyEddies, TwoGuys, Rickels, Herman's Sporting Goods, Caldors, Bradlees, Nobody Beats the Wiz, to name a few, are old news, the more recent news (okay a few years) was Ames and KitchenEtc. Also, a Kmart close to me was closed; but there was another one still nearby. In addition, a signficant number of CompUSA stores closed doors. Now there are only just a few CompUSA around the US. As a result of the recent economic downturn in 3rd quarter 2008, slumping sales, decline in real estate market, downturn in consumer spending and frozen credit markets, both Linens-N-Things and mervyns have announced the closings of all their stores. LNT filed Ch.11 in May'08, but since they had problems to meet needs of creditors, decided to pull the plug on all US stores. LNT closeout sales began Oct. 16, 2008 Thursday. Mervyns (CA-based) is expected to close its stores after the holiday shopping season. Today, CircuitCity announced it will close ~150 stores (including those poor performing ones) to prevent itself from filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy. I'm not sure which stores will be closing, and what happens to their current inventories--will it be liquified at reduced prices (compared to their most popular competitors BestBuy, RadioShack, PC Richards, Target, Expo). Of course, sometimes those warehouse wholesale stores of Sam's Club, Costco, and BJ's sell electronics too. It's sad for these stores to go; as it also means several hundreds of jobs will be lost, and eventually vacant lots and less business taxes to local economies. Unfortunately, I dont need anything at LNT; but, when they start offering great buys, I may just browse their store to see things that I would like to have for my future home. At that time, usually the junk is left or the most expensive items that people just dont buy even at reduced prices.

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Sunday, October 19, 2008

What has happened recently

It's October 19, 2008 Sunday night.
Dow @8852.22; Nasdaq @1711.29; S&P500 @940.55; 10Yr Treasury Note=3.938%; 30-Yr Treasury Bond=4.312%; DJ Utility average=345.6; DowTransportation=3692.73; Nasdaq Biotech=700.74; S&P Smallcap600=282.33; S&P400MidCap=550.01; Russell2000=526.43; Worldwide: Nikkei225=8739.70; TSE Reit idx=818.84; Topix500 TSE Idx=719.20; TopixMid400 TseIdx=871.88; Seoul Composite=1176.79; KRX Index=1171.87; KRX100=2469.54; KOSDAQ Idx=344.20(south korea); BSE30 india=9975.35; Bombay stock ex500 idx=3771.68; HangSeng=14899.24; HangSeng China Ent Idx=7224.56; Dhaka SE Idx=2881.70; HangSeng Mainland25 Ix=4750.07; Shanghai Composite=1913.18; CSI 300 Idx=1828.66; KLSE composite=905.23; Singapore Strait Times=1899.74; Taiwan Taiex Indx=4832.88; Dax=4781.33; CAC40=3329.92; Thai Set50 Idx=327.35; BEL-20=2015.30; PSEi-Philippine SE Idx=2057.84; HO Chi Minh Stock Idx=370.80; FTSE100=4063.01; SwissMarket=6099.62; S&P/ASX=4086.20; NZX 15 Gross Idx=5156.82; NZX ALL Idx=741.66; Karachi100 Idx=9184.24; Karachi ALL Share Idx=6641.45; Mexico Bolsa Index=20312.83; Mexico INMEX Idx=1106.33; Brazil Bovespa Stock Idx=36399.09; DJ Euro TOXX50=2532.17; IBEX35=9655.20; S&P/TSX Composite (Canada)=9562.49; S&P/MIB=21645.00; AEX=252.26; OMX Stockholm30=632.24; Arentina Merval Idx=1216.02; Chile StockMkt Select=2433.04; Venezuela Stock MkIdx=36161.29; Peru General Idx=7906.32; BCT Corp Costa Rica Idx=27312.41; Bermuda StkExch=3717.34; JSE Market Idx (Jamaica)=94727.02;.
Commodities: Brent Crude future=70.57/bbl; Natural Gas Fut=6.9/MMBtu; WTI Crude fut=73.01/bbl; Cocoa future=2122/MT; coffee C future=115.60/lb; corn future=417.25/bu; cotton #2 future=52.57/lb; soybeans=940.00/bu; sugar #11 world=11.58/lb; wheat future CBT=573.00/bu.; Gold 100oz fut=784.00/t oz; silver fut=9.75/t oz. Cattle feeders=98.05/lb; live cattle future=92.80/lb.; nymex crude=73.01; NYC Gate natural gas spot=7.11;
Silver is moving at 9.39; Platinum=876; Gold=784 (down 20 from weekend).
Things have changed alot since my last post in 2006. ING savings is @2.75%. Average 12-month CD's 4.10%. WaMu is now JPM-Chase; as well as Bear Sterns. Wachovia is now WellsFargo. Countrywide is with Bank of America, as well as Merrill Lynch. Lehman Brothers gone! GoldmanSachs gets $5bill from Buffett! Banco Santander acquires northeast Sovereign Bank. AIG gets $85bill from US government. Alot has changed. Credit crisis now. Debt obligations and investment of debt has gone wild. Foreclosures have increased dramatically in 2007 and 2008!

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