February 5, 2013 |
Billionaire investor Ronald O. Perelman has donated $25 million to the University of Pennsylvania to create a new center to house both its political science and economic departments, the university announced today. The new center will bear his name and be based at the West Philadelphia Trust Building at 36th and Walnut streets in the heart of Penn's campus. "Ron Perelman's extraordinary generosity will enable us to create an outstanding center for political science and economics, two of Penn's most popular undergraduate majors," Penn President Amy Gutmann said in a prepared statement.
January 31, 2013 |
NEW YORK - A reminder that the U.S. economy still remains a long way from being fully healed after the Great Recession put the brakes on a January rally that has pushed stocks close to record levels. The Standard & Poor's 500 logged its biggest drop of the year. Stocks started the day lower after a report showed that the U.S. economy unexpectedly contracted in the fourth quarter. That decline extended after the Federal Reserve said it would continue its bond-buying program to boost growth.
January 17, 2013 |
When it comes to filtering the blizzard of statistics, I pay more attention to reports that document actions rather than intentions. I wait for those snapshots of actual consumer spending that emerge weeks after the surveys of consumer confidence and sentiment. Often, we profess restraint on spending on holiday shopping only to find ourselves tripping over too many wrapped gift boxes on Christmas morning. On Tuesday, the Census Bureau issued advance estimates of U.S. retail sales for December that were up 0.5 percent from November and 4.7 percent from December 2011 - a mild surprise given weak consumer confidence numbers recently.
January 7, 2013
America needs an optimism injection. For too long, this country has stared at the problems it faces and acted as if they are too big to solve. Deficit reduction and other ailments are addressed piecemeal because politicians don't believe the public can swallow stronger medicine. And the public is beginning to believe them. It's as if the recession sucked some of the spirit out of this country. Economic prognosticators keep telling young people their future will be worse than their present, and then adults wonder why America's youths lack the drive they had when they were kids.
December 4, 2012 |
TIANJIN, China - This port city of 13 million on the coast of northern China could really give an American mayor a serious case of investment envy. For Mayor Nutter, that feeling may have started the moment he boarded a bullet train in Beijing's Jetsons -style rail station for the 69-mile, 33-minute journey to Tianjin. Or maybe it was when his police escort here took him past some of the factories of 185 of the world's Fortune 500 companies, including GlaxoSmithKline. Or when he viewed a model of a master plan for an economic development zone rising from salt flats and equal in size to Center City and South Philadelphia combined.
November 3, 2012 |
It's only been a day, but November on Wall Street is already looking a lot better than October. Strong economic data and corporate news converged Thursday to give U.S. stocks their best day since mid-September. Positive signs about the job market and soaring sales figures pushed stock futures up before the market opened. A half-hour into trading, reports on manufacturing and consumer confidence added another log to the fire. The Dow Jones industrial average had already risen 100 points when the mid-morning reports came out. The data - including news that manufacturing grew for the second straight month - pushed it up as much as 177 points.
November 3, 2012 |
The telephone began ringing nonstop in public insurance adjuster Ira Straff's Bala Cynwyd office Monday afternoon, even as Hurricane Sandy was spinning off the New Jersey coast, looking for a place to land. On Thursday afternoon, Straff, president of the Insurance Adjustment Bureau, a 48-year-old firm that represents property owners in negotiating claims settlements with insurance companies, was in his office, having spent the last three days "walking through muck" all over the region.
October 30, 2012
By Peter Morici Hurricane Sandy will likely have devastating effects on lives and property. However, gauging its full impact on an economy still struggling to recover from the Great Recession - though with substantial resources to overcome adversity - is far more complex than merely adding up insurance payouts and uninsured losses. Disasters can give an ailing construction sector a boost, while unleashing reinvestment that actually improves stricken areas and the lives of residents.
October 27, 2012 |
Teena Watson, a single mother of two now back in Philadelphia after living in Erie, saw a homeless shelter as her only option. "I came back to go to school, get a job, and try to get a better life for my children," Chanel, 7, and Nakeya, 2, Watson said. But everywhere she turned, nothing appeared to be available that she could afford and that could accommodate her disability - she is hearing-impaired and told her story through interpreter Crystal Blue, of the Society for Helping Church.
October 26, 2012 |
So this is what investors mean by patience: Three years after a smoldering economy reduced Philadelphia's premiere shopping district to an avenue of stalwart retailers sharing space with suddenly vacant storefronts, the rebound is on. And it's hot. The elegant old buildings that form the spine of a 4 1/2-block streetscape of shopping between Broad and 20th Streets are teeming with life. Vacancies are few as reinvestment restores glitz to a promenade that aspires to be the city's gold standard of exclusivity but that a few years ago was down on its retail high heels.