Newspaper circulation declines (Times Dispatch)
The Richmond Times-Dispatch followed a national trend as circulation dropped among the nation’s newspapers between October and March. U.S. newspaper circulation declined 7.1 percent, while weekday circulation at the Times-Dispatch dropped 9.9 percent. Sunday subscriptions for the T-D increased slightly.
No swine flu found in Mexican operations, Smithfield says (Virginia Pilot)
Swine flu doesn’t come from eating pork. But that didn’t stop fearful investors from selling off Smithfield Foods’ shares Monday, driving the price down 12 percent, or $1.28, to $9.04.
Sold on direct sales as an income supplement (Roanoke Times)
In the Roanoke metropolitan statistical area, the number of Silpada consultants rose 62.5 percent from the first quarter of 2008 to this year’s first quarter, according to the company. A national recession creates an opportune climate for a career in direct sales, because people generally work for themselves and receive a commission ranging from 25 percent to more than 50 percent.
GM’s New Road Map: Partial Nationalization (Washington Post)
Once a symbol of capitalist might and U.S. industrial prowess, General Motors would be half owned by the Treasury under a new sweeping plan that would also shut down GM’s Pontiac operations, lay off 21,000 workers and impose harsh terms on the company’s bondholders, who have until May 8 to accept or to try to negotiate better terms.
The Next Financial Explosion (Slate)
The failure of residential mortgage-backed securities was just the first ripple of this much larger wave. Asset types that didn’t exist on the same scale in 1929—like credit cards, industrial loans, and commercial real estate—still hold the force to wreak more havoc. And on the tip of Wall Street’s and Washington’s tongues are commercial mortgage-backed securities. But it might just be the Geithner plan that halts the wave and saves our shopping malls from looking as dead as some suburbs.
Franchise Sales Pull Back During the Recession (Wall Street Journal)
Discouraged by economic conditions, some franchisers are cutting back on efforts to sell franchises. Annual applications from franchisers who want to do business in Maryland are down significantly so far this year, says Dale Cantone, an assistant attorney general for the state. First-quarter franchise-registration applications in Maryland fell 16% from a year earlier to 367. Other states report similar falloffs.
The Zappos Way of Managing (Inc.)
How Tony Hsieh uses relentless innovation, stellar customer service, and a staff of believers to make Zappos.com an e-commerce juggernaut — and one of the most blissed-out businesses in America