Google Succeeds, Even When Failing

Posted by Admin | February 22nd, 2011

Google has made a ton of industry revolutionizing moves in recent years. The search engine is incredibly dominant in the search industry because of its ability to utilize its popularity and search engines for other uses. Not every idea that Google rolls out works all that well, though–exhibit A is their latest real estate venture. It sort of went down in flames because other companies and websites had already created more sophisticated real estate-search engines. Still, Google isn’t hurting:

Such setbacks have hardly affected Google’s financial performance. Its 2010 financial results were stellar. Fourth-quarter results topped expectations, with $29.3 billion in revenue and a full-year profit of $8.5 billion—a 30 percent gain over the past year. The question is: How long will the good times last?

Basically, nothing that Google does other than search, Adwords, and Adsense turns a profit. Google is an incredible company with innovative ideas and some of the smartest minds, but even they misstep sometimes. Still, the search engine giant is unlikely to go anywhere anytime soon.


Home Prices Rise

Posted by Admin | April 27th, 2010

The housing market has been in a slump for quite a while. Even before the crash of 2007 housing prices were in decline, though they weren’t in a free-fall until the crash. However, it looks like home prices are up now, for the first year since 2006.

Home prices in February posted their first annual increase since the end of 2006, lifted by temporary tax credits for homebuyers.

The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller home price index released Tuesday squeezed out a 0.6 percent gain. But that was half the increase analysts had expected. On a more cautionary note, 11 of the 20 cities tracked by the index showed declines from February last year. Houston is not one of the 20 cities.

The data underscored the fragile nature of the housing recovery. Nationally, home prices are up more than 3 percent from the bottom in May 2009, but still are 30 percent below the May 2006 peak.

The article goes on to explain that prices are being temporarily boosted by a tax credit that runs out in April, so this could be the result of some market manipulation by that program.


Some Flights Resume in Northern Atlantic

Posted by Admin | April 19th, 2010

For the past five days airliners in the Northern Atlantic and Europe have been suffering heavy losses due to the volcanic eruption in Iceland. The volcano spewed forth so much ash that flights simply could not be conducted safely anymore. Now, some good news for the airline industry:

European airspace that was closed by the volcanic eruption in Iceland will reopen to flights today after transport ministers said planes could fly through thinner parts of the ash plume.Operations in areas where dust is detected will be assessed by the U.K.’s Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre, which will also determine which zones are entirely safe and which should remain closed because of the potential threat to aircraft engines. A new ash cloud headed for the U.K. means London’s airports may not be able to open, National Air Traffic Services said.

This should be very good news for all the passengers who are currently straded in Northern Europe, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Canada.


Honda’s Faulty Airbags

Posted by Admin | February 9th, 2010

It seems like everytime I turn around another major car company is announcing another recall of hundreds of thousands of cars. First it was Toyota, now it’s Honda. While Toyota suffered from “sticky accelerators”, Honda is recalling vehicles because of faulty airbags. 379,000 vehicles are being recalled because their airbags might inflate with too much pressure, which could cause serious injury or death.

Although none of the reported problems occurred after July 2009, Honda said it was still expanding the recall because it could not be sure that the inflators in the aforementioned vehicles would work correctly.

Honda said it will notify affected customers by mail and phone with instructions on how to have their vehicles inspected and updated at an authorized dealer. The entire production of each of the models in question is not necessarily included in the recall.

Between Toyota and Honda, it seems like every car is getting recalled, doesn’t it?


Black Friday Is a Bomb

Posted by Admin | December 3rd, 2009

The economy has long been suffering from a serious recession, the likes of which has not been seen for decades. Black Friday, the shopping holiday that comes right after Thanksgiving, was predicted to give the economy, and November sales numbers, a significant jump–and one that might rejuvenate the economy.

Unfortunately, Black Friday posted disappointing sales numbers despite massive media coverage and hype of the event.

About 30 national chains reported monthly sales at established stores on Thursday, a key measure of the industry’s health. Several chains, including Costco and J.C. Penney, performed worse than analysts expected. Retailers said that unseasonably warm weather dampened sales at the beginning of the month. In addition, shoppers saved their cash for post-Thanksgiving deals.

Analysts had expected a much better showing from the nationwide sale. These numbers are incredibly disappointing and seem to be fairly bad news for the economy in general.