GM’s Future Is Looking Green, Big Mac Selfie Time and the Airline Industry Is Full of Surprises


Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono/

Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono/

File this one under things that make you hmmm…Following a horrific year and quarter, GM and its CEO Mary Barra  came out…on top! Even after a massive recall fiasco that put a gaping $1.3 billion hole in General Motors financials, the automaker was still seeing green today. Profits for the company were down 85% yet it still beat the Street’s expectations by $0.02. Yes two cents, as in General Motors does in fact have two cents to rub together…and more. GM’s earnings were up by $0.06 cents a share when Wall Street only expected it to rise by $0.04. General Motors CEO Mary Barra, who has only been at the helm since January and took a brutal Congressional beating over GM’s disastrous recall debacle that cost several lives, was also just named one of Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people.

Not just clowning around…

Image courtesy of Naypong/

Image courtesy of Naypong/

“Selfies…here I come.” No that wasn’t Miley Cyrus! But guess who is finally joining the Twitterverse? None other than everyone’s favorite big-mac shilling red-headed clown, Ronald McDonald. The official face of the Golden Arches is also getting a stylish (I’m being generous here) new makeover – replete with cargo pants, a striped rugby shirt and banging new red blazer. If that doesn’t scream Abercrombie & Fitch model, I don’t know what does. The clown’s last makeover was nine years ago and many suspect this new look has a bit to do with Taco Bell and its new campaign to corner the fast-food breakfast arena. Incidentally (or not), Ronald McDonald’s new look was unveiled a day after McDonald’s announced lower than expected sales and profits. You can find Ronald McDonald invading social media at the #RonaldMcDonald hashtag and @McDonaldsCorp.

Wingin’ it…

Photo courtesy of bplanet/

Photo courtesy of bplanet/

American Airlines scored huge when they announced their first quarter earnings beating the Street by almost $0.20 a share. Wall Street predicted they’d come in with earnings of $0.46 a share but (audible gasp) they came in at $0.65 a share! And if you’ve flown with American Airlines recently then you know that is nothing short of miraculous. They posted first quarter revenue of $10 billion and net income of $480 million. Last time I flew American (August), they still hadn’t updated their aircraft fleet and if you wanted to watch television you had to do so on their antiquated drop down televisions with lousy picture quality. A Snickers bar on the flight cost almost as much as the flight itself. So I suppose the numbers  do add up. Delta also pleasantly surprised Wall Street with a nice first quarter profit even though it had to cancel a whopping 17,000 flights due to severe weather. JetBlue and UnitedContinental, despite having newer fleets and presumably better…everything (than American Airlines) didn’t fare as well.

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