These more frequent deadly disasters burden government budgets and could mean new fees for homeowners who live in harm's way.
One of the largest exchanges for the digital currency blames panic selling, tamping down speculation about a hacker attack.
The trading freeze comes after Bitcoin's price plunged from an intraday peak price Wednesday of $266 to $105. Thursday afternoon, the price dropped to $55 (you can see the live price here). Just two months ago, Bitcoins were valued at $20, The Guardian reports.
Observers had been predicting that the Bitcoin bubble would burst, particularly as word of the alternative currency spread in the mainstream media. (Click here for our explainer.)
There are about 11 million Bitcoins in circulation, The Guardian notes. One of the largest trading exchanges, Mt.Gox, announced Thursday that it would halt trading until 2 a.m. GMT Friday to allow the market to cool down.
The beleaguered retailer's returning leader isn't wasting any time undoing the changes ousted CEO Ron Johnson made.
By all accounts, ousted J.C. Penney (JCP) chief executive Ron Johnson made a royal mess of the century-old retailer.
His replacement, Myron Ullman, isn't wasting time mopping up after him.
Ullman has already reached out to Macy's (M) chief executive Terry Lundgren in an effort to settle the rival department store chain's potentially ruinous lawsuit over Martha Stewart-branded home goods, according to the New York Post.
On top of that, Penney has also parted ways with three top executives who, like Johnson, had previously worked at Apple (AAPL), CNBC reports. Johnson's management team of former Apple executives had reportedly caused some friction with long-term Penney employees. The new execs called those veterans DOPEs, for "dumb, old Penney employees," Bloomberg reports.
Finally, the fast-food giant has heard enough complaints about 'rude employees.' Fixing that problem could make a big difference.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the company has told franchisees that it is getting "mounting complaints about rude employees." This comes as no shock to anyone who has visited a McDonald's in recent years. For too many of the chain's workers, customers are at best a nuisance that they barely tolerate.
Rarely do McDonald's workers apologize for screwing up an order. Most barely even acknowledge the outside world. I've patronized the same McDonald's every Friday for years, and I was pleasantly surprised recently when the drive-thru employee who has taken my order for as long as I can remember said hello to me for the first time. Alas, he hasn't done it since.
The cuts are mostly small and wide after a short-term funding bill passed last month stopped a government crisis.
Part of the reason is because Congress stepped in with a short-term funding bill that eased some of the pressure. Food inspectors, for example, got money to stay on the job. And the Department of Defense is still moving forward with construction projects.
In fact, economists from Goldman Sachs (GS) think the sequester will hurt the economy's growth rate by just 0.6 percentage point in the government's fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30. That's not ideal, with the recovery still sputtering -- GDP grew at a meager 2.2% in 2012 -- but it's really not all that devastating.
That's better than the 7 Americans competing for every open position in 2009, but it's still double the prerecession levels.
According to a Department of Labor study released Tuesday, the number of job openings rose to 3.9 million in February, while roughly 12 million Americans were still unemployed. That's great news if you look back to 2009, when there was one available job for every seven unemployed people in the U.S., but it's still pretty terrible by prerecession standards.
In the halcyon days of 2007, 1.5 people were competing for every job opening. It didn't hurt that back then people were applying for jobs they actually wanted as well. Yes, the U.S. economy has recovered 5.7 million of the 8.7 million jobs shed during the recession.
The government has been borrowing money on the cheap and lending it out at a premium, reaping huge profits.
The Huffington Post reported Wednesday that the combination of low borrowing costs for the government and fixed interest rates for students generated $101.8 billion in profit for the Education Department over the last five years.
The department was expected to take in $33.5 billion from student loans made during the 2013 fiscal year, according to budget documents. The agency's Direct Loan program delivered a $24 billion profit on loans made in 2012 and nearly $27.5 billion on 2011 loans.
How does that work out? Simple. The government's funding costs, measured in the yield on 10-year U.S. Treasurys, has averaged less than 2% since the summer of 2011, thanks in no small part to the Federal Reserve's attempts to stimulate the economy.
Forecasters predict an above-average number of Atlantic storms. Too bad agencies like FEMA are going into 2013 short on funding.
Are you ready for another, costly hurricane season?
Researchers at Colorado State University released their 30th annual Atlantic hurricane forecast on Tuesday. And they're predicting an above-average season for 2013, between June 1 and Nov. 30, with 18 named storms, nine hurricanes and four major hurricanes.
The forecasters say there's a 72% probability of a major hurricane making landfall somewhere along the entire U.S. coastline this year, with a 48% chance of a big storm hitting the East Coast and a 47% chance of one landing along the Gulf Coast.
"All vulnerable coastal residents should make the same hurricane preparations every year, regardless of how active or inactive the seasonal forecast is," said Phil Klotzbach, who co-authors the forecast. "It takes only one landfall event near you to make this an active season."
Series regular Shain Gandee died earlier this month. The network has yet to solve the hole in its schedule -- and its ratings -- left by 'Jersey Shore.'
Viacom (VIA.B), which has been battling to reverse double-digit ratings declines at its cable channels, on Wednesday decided to cancel its hit MTV show "Buckwild" following the tragic death of Shain Gandee, whom many considered the show's break-out star.
Gandee, his uncle and a friend were found dead April 1 inside a Ford Bronco that was buried in mud. They had been going off-roading, or "mudding," and succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning, according to media reports.
A company statement sent to MSN said the decision to end the show midway through its second season was not "easy," but was appropriate "given Shain's tragic passing and essential presence on the show."
It came as a shock to producer J.P. Williams, who blasted the network for standing by "Teen Mom," a hit series that features irresponsible young parents, and abandoning "Buckwild."
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While caffeine unquestionably improves focus, it blocks the ability to let the mind wander and form original ideas.
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[BRIEFING.COM] Equities ended on their lows with the S&P 500 down 1.4%.
The S&P entered today's session with a week-to-date gain of 1.5% as investors expected reassuring words from today's Federal Open Market Committee Statement.
Stocks traded with slim losses until this afternoon's FOMC Statement and subsequent comments from Chairman Bernanke sent equities and Treasuries to their lows while also providing a significant boost to the dollar.
Today's Statement was ... More
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Plus, after much ado, Softbank is oh-so-close to acquiring Sprint.