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Monday, March 2, 2009

Great Recession Roundup — March 2, 2009

Items of Interest:

AIG Reports Largest Loss, $61.7 Billion, in US Corporate History

New York Times:
A.I.G. Reports $61.7 Billion Loss as U.S. Gives More Aid — The federal government agreed Monday morning to provide an additional $30 billion in taxpayer money to the American International Group and loosen the terms of its huge loan to the insurer, even as the insurance giant reported a $61.7 billion loss …

John Bacon / On Deadline: News roundup: More bad news from AIG
Brady Dennis / Washington Post:
Treasury and Federal Reserve announce participation in AIG restructuring plan-- Washington, D.C. -- The U.S. Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve Board today announced a restructuring of the government's assistance to AIG in order to stabilize this systemically important company in a manner that best protects the U.S. taxpayer. Specifically, the government's restructuring is designed to enhance the company's capital ...

New York Times:
U.S. Is Said to Offer Another $30 Billion in Funds to A.I.G. — The federal government agreed Sunday night to provide an additional $30 billion in taxpayer money to the American International Group and loosen the terms of its huge loan to the insurer, which is preparing to report a $62 billion loss …
James Kwak / Baseline Scenario:
We Still Don't Know the Extent of the Damage at AIG --Well, it’s done. AIG is getting another bailout [its fourth one].

Tom Maguire / JustOneMinute: AIG, Round Four
Tom Bevan / Real Clear Politics: The Calamity That Is AIG
Susan Duclos / Wake up America: Throwing Good Money After Bad To AIG
Echidne / ECHIDNE OF THE SNAKES: The Most Humongous Loss
Wall Street Journal: U.S. Revamps Bailout of AIG
Mexico: Spring Break, Beaches -- and Bloodshed -- Thousands of American college students will flock to Mexico for spring break as that country's drug war grows more bloody.

The U.S. State Department issued a travel advisory Friday warning of an "increasingly violent" conflict between the government and drug cartels.

"Some recent Mexican army and police confrontations with drug cartels have resembled small-unit combat," the advisory said. "Large firefights have taken place in many towns and cities across Mexico." ...

Last week, the University of Arizona formally discouraged students from traveling to Mexico for spring break....
Jeff Matthews is Not Making This Up:
This Just In: Berkshire Equity Portfolio Back to its Cost Basis -- The 2008 Chairman’s Letter from Warren Buffett is in, and while it contains much of what you’d expect—a self-confession or two, that old Mae West “Snow White” joke, one humorous new aphorism (“beware of geeks bearing formulas”) and a metaphor that associates derivatives with social diseases, not to mention a sober assessment of the world economy, one no-punches-pulled prediction on inflation, as well as plenty of cheerleading for Berkshire’s managers and businesses—the biggest shocker in the letter is not actually highlighted, or even mentioned, by Buffett.

The shocker is this: Berkshire Hathaway’s portfolio of equities—the stocks such as Coke and P&G and Washington Post that Warren Buffett himself, the “Oracle of Omaha,” famously purchased over the years at bargain prices—appears, as of yesterday’s market close, to be worth not much more than Buffett's cost.

That’s right...
Bill Feingold / Minyanville: The Snake-Oil Oracle of Omaha?

Calculated Risk

MishTalk - Mike Shedlock

Paul Krugman - NY Times

The Big Picture - Barry Ritholtz

naked capitalism - Yves Smith

Pragmatic Capitalism

Washington's Blog

Safe Haven

Paper Economy

The Daily Reckoning - Australia