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Archive for January 23, 2011

Bank of America posts loss on mortgage problems

January 23, 2011 4 comments

Joe Rauch
and Maria Aspan

CHARLOTTE, N.C./NEW YORK, Jan. 21, 2011 (Reuters) — Bank of America Corp, the largest U.S. bank, reported weaker-than-expected revenue and a second straight quarterly loss after its limping mortgage business triggered writedowns and legal settlements.


Bank of America’s Merrill Lynch businesses — including retail brokerage and investment banking — were profitable but did not make enough money to overcome the bank’s massive losses from mortgages.

As the financial crisis was ramping up, then Chief Executive Kenneth Lewis bought Countrywide Financial Inc for $4.2 billion. Current CEO Brian Moynihan is still coping with the aftermath.

In the fourth quarter, Bank of America took a writedown of $2 billion to recognize the declining value of Countrywide. The bank also set aside $4.1 billion for legal costs linked to home loans it is buying back from investors, or is likely to buy back.

“Countrywide is still hurting them and it will continue to. It’s like a tooth being pulled — it’s only going to feel good when it’s done,” said Matt McCormick, portfolio manager at Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel Inc in Cincinnati, which does not own Bank of America shares.

It was not clear how Bank of America’s results compared with analysts’ average estimates, given the profusion of special items in the report. Read more…

Twin suns setting on the Earth?

January 23, 2011 Comments off

Tatooine’s twin suns – coming to a planet near you just as soon as Betelgeuse explodes

Twin suns – setting on Earth any day now. Rumors of possible wamp rats and Sarlaac manifestation yet to be confirmed.

  • Betelgeuse losing mass
  • Explosion will create “new sun”
  • May be set for 2012 appearance

IT’S the ultimate experience for Star Wars fans – staring forlornly off into the distance as twin suns sink into the horizon.

Yet it’s not just a figment of George Lucas’s imagination – twin suns are real. And here’s the big news – they could be coming to Earth.

Yes, any day now we see a second sun light up the sky, if only for a matter of weeks.

The infamous red super-giant star in Orion’s nebula – Betelgeuse – is predicted to go gangbusters and the impending super-nova may reach Earth before 2012, and when it does, all of our wildest Star Wars dreams will come true.

The second biggest star in the Orion Nebula is losing mass, a typical indication that a gravitation collapse is occurring.

When that happens, we’ll get our second sun, according to Dr Brad Carter, Senior Lecturer of Physics at the University of Southern Queensland.

“This old star is running out of fuel in its center”, Dr Carter said. Read more…