Deutsche Bank CEO’s are Leaving Early and No One is Shedding Tears; McDonald’s Numbers Not Totally Horrible; Smack Talk at the G7 Summit

You’re Fitschen kidding me…

Image courtesy of biosphere/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of biosphere/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

In case you were wondering how Wall Street feels about Deutsche Bank’s outgoing co-CEO’s Anshu Jain and Juergen Fitschen, then just look at the company’s stock price. Shares of Deustche Bank gleefully shot up over 8% at one point, on the news that the two men would be ditching their digs even earlier than planned. However, those gains weren’t just from the sheer joy of those early departures but also because investors totally dig their replacement, British banker John Cryan, who also happens to have a pretty decent track record. Cryan is what the cool kids call a “takeover specialist” which is something Deutsche Bank could use now more than ever seeing as how Jain and Fitschen couldn’t seem to stem the tide of legal issues that have been plaguing the bank, including a massive $2.5 settlement claim the bank had to fork over after some traders very rudely – and illegally, I might add – rigged some benchmark interest rates. In fact, most of Deutsche Bank’s troubles and scandals seemed to to come out of its investment bank, which coincidentally, was/is under Jain’s watch. The question remains as to whether or not Cryan can pull the largest German bank out of its funk. Except, first he’s got to come up with a plan. At least he speaks German. So score one for Cryan.

You deserve a break today…

Image courtesy of  atibodyphoto/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of atibodyphoto/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Things at McDonald’s weren’t nearly as bad as everyone thought they were going to be. They weren’t great but we’ll get to that. The Golden Arches saw same store sales drop .3% , which is definitely not good. However, at least those sales didn’t drop by .9%, the figure expected by all those super-educated analysts. To that I say booyah.  And then there was Europe. While everywhere else on the planet McDonald’s saw sales fall, McDonald’s needs to give much danke to Germany, France and the UK who showed the burger chain some major love in the form of a 2.3% gain. Analysts only expected Europe to bring in a tres  modest .6% gain. So you see, Chipotle, Panera and Shake Shack haven’t taken over the fast-food world. Yet. McDonald’s is in the midst of bringing about a “turnaround plan” which apparently includes offering breakfast all day. Except that’s only in – where else? – Southern California. Also, as part of the plan to reclaim its rightful place in the fast-food kingdom, CEO and President Steve Easterbrook has big lofty plans to rebrand McDonald’s as “a modern, progressive burger company.” Did you get all that?

Back at the G7 Summit…

Image courtesy of bplanet/Freedigitalphotos.net

Image courtesy of bplanet/Freedigitalphotos.net

There seems to be a bit of confusion coming from the G7 Summit. A French official told reporters that President Obama said the strong dollar is a “problem.” Then, the dollar slid against the euro. However, President Obama insists, “I did not say that.” But, still, the dollar still slipped, for the first time in three days, against the euro. In any case, other important stuff was presumably discussed at the conference where world leaders from the United States, Germany, France, Britain, Italy, Japan and even Canada talked about fiscal issues that are plaguing the world. But who doesn’t love a good “he said, he said,”  especially during a super important meeting between the world’s most powerful people. I could really see this one playing out on South Park.

Crumbs Has Gone Stale, Rolls Royces Are Everywhere (Almost) and Banks Behaving Badly (Again)

Crumbled…

Image courtesy of YaiSirichai/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of YaiSirichai/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

America just isn’t that into them anymore…cupcakes, that is. A sure sign the cupcake craze has officially arrived at a screeching halt comes with the news that Crumbs Bake Shop has shuttered all of its 65 bakes shops. All. Of. Them. The first store opened in March 2003 and  the company then went public in 2011. But a taste for the confection went south, as did the bakery’s sales. In 2013, the company choked down close to $20 million in losses. Last week Nasdaq suspended trading of the not so sweet stock after it failed to meet the minimum $2.5 million in shareholder equity. And it is with bitter and not at all sweet sorrow, that the stock has been officially de-listed.

Rolls with it…

Image courtesy of Sharron Goodyear/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Sharron Goodyear/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

If you were wondering why you keep seeing Rolls Royces wherever you go (or maybe you don’t wonder about it, or even see them all over the place), there’s a very reasonable explanantion. Lots more people are buying them. Sales for the car (but is it really just a car?) which can go for several hundred thousand dollars are up 33%. But just who are these people that are buying them, since you, unfortunately, are not one of them (or maybe you are). Well if we take peek over the pond, sales of the ultra-luxurious automobile are up in Europe over 60%. Motorists really seem to dig the Rolls in the Middle East and the Asian Pacific too. Even in the good old U.S. of A, sales climbed well into the double digits. Over 1900 Rolls Royces were sold since the beginning of the year. BMW, which owns Rolls Royce also went up about 10%.

Next up…

Image courtesy of anankkml/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of anankkml/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Move over BNP Paribas, there’s a new naughty bank in town. Actually two. Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank have become the latest European banks to face the wrath and pricey penalties from the United States Department of Justice. Both banks are accused of playing nice with countries blacklisted by the US government, including Iran and Sudan. The banks allegedly transferred money for the offending and offensively ruled countries through US operations. Deutsche Bank, which already had to pay about 500 million euros in fines swears that all its dealings with Iran were totally legit. After all, how could they not be when dealing with Iran and Sudan? Commerzbank is Germany’s second largest bank and is 17% government owned. However some are wondering and concerned that this not-so-little issue is going to put a crimp in the beautiful and somewhat harmonious relationship between the US and Germany. Let’s hope the expected $500 million settlement to forego criminal charges will assuage that.