How Big is General Motors?

On June 23, 2010, articles on Reuters and Bloomberg said GM General Motors plans an IPO Initial Public Offering. Some of the major stockholders will sell some of their shares.

I shared the articles with my friend Dr. Doug Stetson, an acute observer currently inspiring insights for the govt in Washington, who always has something interesting to say. He pointed out that many people, for instance us, weren’t aware that (1) GM isn’t a publicly traded company, and (2) Toyota (NYSE:TM) is twice the size of GM as the Reuters article asserts. I looked into it, and verified both are true.


What should we do about BP?

In a democracy, the people or their representatives decide how to respond to great problems. The Deepwater Horizon oil well explosion on April 20 and spill in the GOM Gulf of Mexico counts as a great problem. It has caused loss of income to fishermen. As oil comes ashore, people who depend on tourism and outdoor sports will suffer, and it will degrade the quality of life for communities near the water. It has caused immense fouling of water and wildlife habitats. Eleven people died in the explosion. The U.S. government’s prudent suspension of exploratory drilling in GOM interrupts the incomes of industry workers. Today, two months after the explosion, the broken well continues to emit large quantities of oil, most of which, in late June, is captured or burned. This fragile jury-rigged stopgap will try to catch emerging oil for two more months until drillers complete the relief well.


Peak Oil and Peak Demand

I enjoy reading the essays of Gregor Macdonald. Mr. Macdonald asserts the Peak Oil hypothesis. He has amassed a collection of supporting factual detail. The Peak Oil hypothesis holds that worldwide annual petroleum production increased to a peak in the first decade of the third millennium, and annual production will decline hereafter.

Why the peak? There are several explanations, and here are some of them. They aren’t mutually exclusive.


Share of Income

We read a news report that GDP Gross Domestic Product increased at an annual rate of 3% in 10Q1 (Bureau of Economic Analysis, May 27, 2010). How fairly was this increase shared among the population? We find indications that a disproportionate share of the related income, perhaps the entire increase, may have gone to the wealthiest 20% of households.


Income Inequities

The U.S. Treasury publishes statistical tables showing the adjusted gross incomes of groups of taxpayers. Dig in and you will find a Table 5 from which I took the data (in June 2010) to draw these charts.

The first chart shows the floor incomes of certain percentiles of taxpayers. Of all the people in that percentile, the person with the smallest income is selected, and his or her income is shown.


First Blog Post

Woo-hoo! I'm blogging!

My marketing professor told me the course requires me to set up a blog, and that some companies won't hire me into the marketing department unless I have a blog.

So, I asked my esteemed advisors