Rick Newman


January 2010


Toyota Shows How Giants Stumble

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At General Motors, they used to call their surging competitor "Mr. T," as if intimidated by a muscular rival who seemed able to seize market share at will. But Toyota suddenly looks pretty meek, thanks to a mystifying safety problem that has led to a huge recall, an unprecedented production ...

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TAGS:
cars
Toyota

What an Obama Do-Over Would Look Like

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Many Barack Obama supporters felt a messiah had arrived when he assumed the presidency in 2009. But when it comes to predicting the future, Obama has proved he's a mere mortal.

A year ago, the unemployment rate was 7.7 percent, and mainstream forecasts predicted it might hit 9 percent or so before ...

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TAGS:
economy
Obama, Barack

Why Shopping May Never Be the Same Again

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Hey, you. Yes, you—the one shoving your wallet back into your pocket. Are you aware that you've been making retailers very uncomfortable?

A façade of calm may be returning to the consumer landscape as a thrashing recession finally subsides. But behind the cheerful window displays are deeply ...

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TAGS:
shopping
consumers

21 Things We're Learning to Live Without

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What do you really need?

It's become a national question. With jobs and money scarce, consumers are taking inventory and tossing lots of stuff once deemed important into a humongous discard pile. To safeguard the essentials—a safe home and supportive community, the kids' education, Internet ...

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TAGS:
recession
consumers

New Rules for a Darwinian Economy

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Scott Cohen spent 28 profitable years in the mortgage business, eventually starting his own firm just as the Southern California housing bubble was beginning to inflate in 2001. By 2007, the small company employed 15 people and provided enough income for Cohen, his wife, Merced, and their two kids ...

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TAGS:
economy
consumers

17 Ways Consumers Are Changing

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You seem different. More anxious. Pensive, perhaps. What's on your mind?

A lot of people desperately want to know. Market researchers always want to get inside the heads of consumers, and they've never been more curious than they are now. In the aftermath of a wrenching recession, Americans are ...

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TAGS:
behavior
consumers

Retail Winners and Losers

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Shoppers revived at the end of 2009, opening their wallets a bit more than expected and sparing many retailers a second consecutive year of holiday gloom. An early survey by MasterCard suggests that sales in December rose by about 3.6 percent, after a ghastly decline in 2008. ThomsonReuters reports ...

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TAGS:
shopping

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