Media Navel Gaze: December 6, 2011
The Week Unpeeled
We enter the week following some long overdue somewhat positive headlines, with the US jobless rate declining (at least on the surface) to 8.6 percent in November, from 9.0 percent in October and non-farm adding some 120,000 jobs. Also, the central bank exhibited a show of force in providing greenbacks to European banks, easing strains a bit. Elsewhere:
- Time Warner named Laura Lang as its new chief of Time Inc., the publisher of about 20 magazines, significant because the executive comes from Digitas, the digital advertising firm and not from the magazine or publishing business.
- Warren Buffett went old-school media and acquired the publisher of his hometown newspaper, the Omaha World-Herald.
- Facebook reportedly is now targeting a second quarter 2012 IPO listing with a value estimated at $100 billion.
- The owners (Malkin Family) of the Empire State Building filed with the SEC to form a new REIT that would include the iconic building and home to our office so we may all be owners in the 1,400 tower that was last valued at $1.65 billion.
- While we are up in the air, American Airlines’ parent filed for bankruptcy (not all headlines were good).
- On the Continent, a senior Polish minister declared that the biggest threat to his nation’s security was not terrorism, or German tanks, or even Russian missiles, but the collapse of the Eurozone “I demand of Germany that, for your own sake and for ours, you help it survive and prosper,” he said.
- The UK Chancellor George Osborne delivered a bleak outlook in his “Autumn Statement” detailing an unprecedented series of public spending cuts for the UK. He warned that British households will face a further six years of economic strife as living standards fall and unemployment levels continue to rise.