Exxon (XOM) Third-Quarter Profits Highlight Week of Gains

Weekly Wrap Up

Markets achieved more weekly gains to finish out the last full trading week of October, despite ending Friday with mixed results. The move forward was thanks to a new European debt agreement, to which investors responded with enthusiasm. The deal calls for private banks to take a 50% loss on Greek debt holdings to help lower the country's tax burden.

In corporate news, Exxon Mobil (XOM: Charts, News) recorded a $10 billion profit for the third quarter thanks to rising crude oil prices.
Boeing (BA: Charts, News) announced strong quarterly profit, as well, but reduced its delivery forecast, causing fears for some investors. More Market News

Economic News

Italy at heart of crisis as borrowing costs climb
Italy's borrowing costs jumped to record levels on Friday, underlining its vulnerability at the heart of the euro zone debt crisis and scepticism about whether the struggling government of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi can deliver vital reforms.

The 6.06 percent yield paid at an auction of 10-year bonds was the highest since the launch of the euro, and not far from the level reached before the European Central Bank intervened in August to cap Rome's borrowing costs by buying Italian debt. (Source: Reuters) Click here to read the full article
Savings rate falls as spending outpaces income gains
Are Americans returning to their profligate spending ways?

Some may be asking that question after the latest government report showed consumer spending in September rose by a surprisingly robust 0.6%, even as personal incomes barely grew over the month. And adjusting for inflation, after-tax income in September actually fell by 0.1%, the Commerce Department reported Friday.

Put all that together and you get a sharp drop in the saving rate last month, to 3.6%. That's the lowest level since 2007 and a drop from about 5% to 6% during most of the last two years. (Source: LA Times) Click here to read the full article

Business News

Exxon Mobil Third-Quarter Profit Tops $10 Billion on Crude Oil Price Surge
Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM: Charts, News), the world’s largest company by market value, said net income exceeded $10 billion for a third consecutive quarter as rallying crude prices more than made up for the biggest production decline in three years.

Oil and natural-gas production fell 3.8 percent to the equivalent of 4.28 million barrels of crude a day, the largest decline since the third quarter of 2008, according to Bloomberg data. The drop was smaller than the double-digit production shortfalls reported earlier this week by rivals such as BP Plc (BP: Charts, News), ConocoPhillips (COP: Charts, News) and Hess Corp. (HES: Charts, News). (Source: Bloomberg) Click here to read the full article
Boeing Posts Strong Profit but Cuts Delivery Forecast
Boeing (BA: Charts, News) said Wednesday that its third-quarter earnings topped estimates and projected that its new 787 Dreamliner would earn at least a low, single-digit profit from sales of the first 1,100 planes.

Analysts have been concerned about how long it would take for Boeing to recover its huge investment in the more fuel-efficient passenger plane, which went through several years of production delays and cost increases before the first jet was delivered last month. (Source: New York Times) Click here to read the full article

Technology Focus

Amazon.com shares slump as costs weigh on outlook
Shares of Amazon.com Inc (AMZN: Charts, News) fell 11 percent on Wednesday, a day after the company forecast a disappointing outlook for the current quarter on costs related to Kindle and other investments to grow the company.

Analysts with at least six brokerages, including BofA Merrill Lynch, J.P. Morgan Securities and Barclays, lowered their price targets on Amazon's stock, on third-quarter results that came in below Wall Street expectations. (Source: Reuters) Click here to read the full article
Netflix Shares Tank Amid Backlash and Defections
Netflix (NFLX: Charts, News) shares plunged 35 percent Tuesday after the one-time Wall Street favorite revealed a massive departure of subscribers angered by price increases and other questionable changes at the rental service that was created to make entertainment a snap.

Netflix revealed late Monday that it ended September with 23.8 million U.S. subscribers. That's down about 800,000 from June and worse than what the company had hinted at before. In September, the company predicted it will lose about 600,000 U.S. customers. (Source: ABC News) Click here to read the full article

Your Money

The George Costanza Approach to Fixing Fatal Flaws
In my work on leadership development, the first thing I usually advise is to look past your flaws to your strengths, since no one becomes an extraordinary leader by becoming flawless. You become a great leader, our research shows, by having strengths so profound people forgive, if not completely overlook, your faults.

But about 20% of the time, I encounter a person whose flaws are so deep that no strengths can make up for them. (Source: Harvard Business Review Blog) Click here to read the full article
Launching Effective Start-ups in Governments
Government "start-ups" - new agencies, offices, or initiatives - have the potential to be a powerful tool for solving critical policy problems at the local, state, and federal levels. But while creating the "new and the nimble" within an established bureaucracy is a well-known art form in the private sector, governments are still struggling to do it effectively.

This isn't surprising given the differences between businesses and governments. As a result, governments can't simply apply the approaches that work in a business setting. Drawing from our leadership experiences in two public-sector start-ups, we've come up with some approaches that other entrepreneurs in governments might find useful. (Source: Harvard Business Review Blog) Click here to read the full article
Published on Oct 28, 2011
By InvestorGuide Staff

Copyrighted 2020. Content published with author's permission.

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