President Obama Tells CEO’s How to Invest (it’s true); Tesla Electrified Owners; Hershey Welcomes Back Sugar

 Oh and by the way…

Image courtesy of cooldesign/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of cooldesign/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

As I mentioned yesterday, the Business Roundatble got together to dish out its thoughts and projections for the economy. If you recall, the BRT is a group of CEO’s “of leading U.S. companies working to promote sound public policy and a thriving U.S. economy.” I’m down with that. Not to be outdone, President Obama, who is not a CEO, told the BRT group, who by the way, represent around $7.4 trillion in annual revenue, that they should invest in infrastructure which apparently is a fabulous “foundation for growth.” It should be duly noted that this business advice is coming from the same person who is responsible for the very unaffordable Affordable Healthcare Care Act. Just saying. President Obama also went on to say that the thorn in his executive side, the bane of his Presidential existence, also known as Republicans, would be sure to challenge any source of funding if it meant new taxes. And just when I was looking forward to paying more taxes together with my unaffordable health care, darn it! Hence, according to Mr. President, you needn’t hold your breath for any new infrastructure bill to pass. And while private investment in infrastructure is no new concept, especially in other countries, here in the United States, legal and tax issues don’t exactly scream, “Invest in infrastructure!”

Zap to it…

Image courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Can Tesla do no wrong? Well it can but apparently not when it comes to Consumer Reports, which just reported that the Tesla Model S is so beloved amongst its owners that 98% of them would repurchase the vehicle (But what of the other 2%?). The car which goes for close to $70,000 is even a fave with the team over at Consumer Reports. Other cars that owners loved were the Chevrolet Corvette Stingray and the Subaru Forester. Apples and oranges, I know. The Kia Rio, sad to say (actually ambivalent) failed to impress its owners. However, it was the Nissan Versa that found itself at the bottom of the list. And while life is good at the top for Tesla, it best be warned: BMW is nipping at its shiny bumper. Especially with its i3.  While Tesla’s superchargers across the country (and beyond) can be used only with Teslas, BMW is about to put out its own series of superchargers that will be compatible with other models. Except for Teslas. And Nissans (especially that Versa).

I know this sounds corny but…

Image courtesy of artur84/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of artur84/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

High-fructose corn syrup beware! You’re on the chopping block having gotten a bad rep over the last several years by getting blamed for a rise in obesity and diabetes. While there isn’t enough evidence that corn-syrup is exclusively to blame,  The Hershey Co. has still decided to kick that ingredient out of its delectable confections.  Instead it will once again use perennial favorite , and old time classic, sugar, instead of the high-fructose corn syrup/sugar cocktail it had been using for so many years. Sugar, that formidable staple which holds a prominent place in my own personal food pyramid, will once again reign supreme for Hershey confections.  However, there is no official time-frame for the switch –  only an acknowledgement that consumers, my self included, much prefer sugar over high-fructose corn syrup.  One of the many groups not pleased by this turn of events are those involved in corn futures. Refiners have even cut costs just to compete with sugar. But seriously, can you really compete with…sugar?

Flying the Pricey Skies, Tesla’s Going Ga Ga For Giga, and Swiss Diss

What’s your loyalty worth…

Photo courtesy of bplanet/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo courtesy of bplanet/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

“A new model for earning miles will increase rewards for those who spend more as well as differentiate the SkyMiles frequent-flier program for our premium travelers,” says Jeff Robertson, the Delta Vice President who oversees the airline’s loyalty operations.  But just how loyal are you going to feel towards Delta? If you spent a big chunk of time racking up frequent flier miles on Delta, you might want to start cashing them in.  In about ten months they’re making some big changes to their rewards program that you might not find so rewarding.  Delta’s not gonna care how much you’ve flown and how much time you’ve spent on their aircraft – only how much cash you shelled out to have the privilege of flying with them.  Yep.  Mileage reward based on actual miles traveled will be a thing of the past.  If you’re looking to get rewarded your gonna have to pony up. While they’re not the first company to that, they are the first of the bigger airlines to do it.

The excitement is electric…

Photo courtesy digitalart/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo courtesy digitalart/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It’s good to be Elon Musk these days.  The Tesla Chief Executive is gearing up to build a gigafactory.  Now what on earth is a gigafactory, you ask?  You could say it’s a battery factory.  But that would be like saying a Tesla is just a car, which – let’s be real-  is so much more.  Because Morgan Stanley is just as stoked,Tesla’s market value went above $30 billion.   And if you were on the fence about acquiring the sweet battery-powered ride, know that it just became the first US car to receive  “best overall pick” in Consumer Reports magazine.

Yodel-ey-hee-boo-hoo…

Photo courtesy bplanet/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo courtesy bplanet/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Doesn’t look like Credit Suisse will be yodeling a happy tune any time soon.  Switzerland’s second largest bank acknowledged misconduct by a small group of private bankers.  Well that’s a relief  – just not a tax relief. Credit Suisse Chief Brady Dougan  – who happens to be a US citizen  – deeply regrets “that some Credit Suisse bankers appear to have violated US law.”  Rest assured that the bank’s management had allegedly no knowledge that nearly 22,000 US customers were hiding $10-12 billion in assets with them.  But you really gotta wonder what that says about their management skills.