Knowledge is Power: Chrysler’s Surgical Bankruptcy Edition

1.Canada’s economy is in serious trouble, which means our future jobs and prosperity are in trouble.

Our economic problems run much deeper than the daily headlines on job losses at General Motors, bankruptcy protection at Nortel, and business failures in many small businesses, from retailers to restaurants.

For several decades we have failed – despite repeated initiatives – to build the kind of economy that can create and grow the innovative businesses that can survive and grow in the global marketplace. It’s these innovative companies that provide future jobs and replace the jobs we lose.Canada: Innovate or stagnate

2.Ignore that Chrysler LLC, smallest of the Detroit Three automakers, has filed for creditor protection in what the firm hopes will be a brief “surgical” bankruptcy from which it emerges a healthy firm in just one to two months.

Skipping along the rim of the abyss has been the Chrysler way since the 1970s. Chrysler should have replaced its pentagram logo with a phoenix decades ago. How many industry veterans, watching as Lee Iacocca drove North America’s first minivan off the assembly line at Windsor in the early 1980s, thought Chrysler was so well and truly saved it would never edge up to the precipice again? Saving jobs sole motive for alliance

3. United States central bankers may actually believe the assumptions behind their “stress tests” of commercial lenders. More likely, neither the Federal Reserve nor the Treasury has any will to paint a clear picture of the country’s financial turmoil. China’s purchase of gold, meanwhile, tells its own story. Stress tests flunk stress test

Related: Stress-Test Results Are Delayed by Fed as Examiners, Banks Debate Finding

4.Merchandise trade volumes of the Group of Seven (G7) took an unprecedented drop in the last quarter of 2008 compared with the previous quarter. However, provisional monthly data for January and February 2009 measured in value terms suggest a slowing down of the rate of decline. Trade flows collapse in Q4 2008 but signs of falls easing in early 2009

5.Speaking at the FinanceAsia and AsianInvestor distressed investing conference, the Patron Saint of Bankruptcy, Professor Ed Altman, believes that we are entering a golden age of corporate default. A vintage year for failures

6.With the Chinese government announcing that it wants to become the world’s largest producer of electric cars in the next three years, some of the smartest minds in business—including Warren Buffet, the management teams of global majors like BMW and Toyota, and leading Chinese auto manufacturers like Chery Automobile and Geely Automobile—believe that the market for electric vehicles in China is about to take off. Yet, most manufacturers chasing this market don’t fully understand who the customer really is.The Race for China’s Electric Car

7.Is history repeating itself? The current global downturn has many parallels to the Great Depression. And if the current massive bailout packages fail, the effect on the world’s economies could be similarly drastic.Current Crisis Shows Uncanny Parallels to Great Depression

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