Business News Archive - February 28, 2009

Investment banks that have received taxpayer bailout funds say they need to pay bonuses to top brokers to keep them from jumping to competitors.

Wisconsin refrigerator maker Sub-Zero Freezer/Wolf Appliance says it will lay off up to 350 local employees after May 1. Chuck Verri, Sub-Zero Freezer/Wolf Appliance's vice president of human resources, told the Wisconsin State Journal in Madison, Wis., that the layoffs are being prompted by the recession and market slowdown in housing and remodeling. It's a continuation of the low demand for new housing, he said.

Two small banks in Illinois and Nevada have been shuttered, state financial regulators say. Illinois regulators closed down Heritage Community Bank, a four-branch lender based in Glenwood, Ill., with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

Berkshire Hathaway Inc. of Omaha, Neb., says 2008 was legendary investor Warren Buffet's worst year ever while eking out a fourth-quarter gain.

Iceland's Parliament says it's voted to oust David Oddsson as chief of the central bank for his role in the country's economic collapse. The legislation, expected to be signed by President Olafur Grimsson, reorganizes the central bank to remove Oddsson, who has resisted calls for his resignation, The Wall Street Journal reported Saturday. Thursday's vote supported a widely held view that Oddsson hastened Iceland's banking collapse with ill-conceived rescue plans, the Journal reported. Oddsson, who was Iceland's prime minister from 1991 to 2004 and central bank chief since 2005, has been criticized for maintaining foreign-exchange reserves too small for Iceland's banking system.

The chief investment officer of Stanford Financial Group obstructed a U.S. government inquiry into a suspected pyramid fraud scheme, prosecutors say.

Howard Stringer, Sony's chief executive, says he will become president as well to bolster the company's struggling electronics division. Stringer, 67, announced Friday he is succeeding Ryoji Chubachi, 61, who will become responsible for product quality and safety, a post that removes him from top decision-making,

Word of the Day
  • The horn of a unicorn considered as a medical or pharmacological ingredient.
  • A winged horse with a single horn on its head; a winged unicorn.
The word 'alicorn' comes from Italian alicorno, already associated with unicorns and reinterpreted, popularized by Bearing an Hourglass (1984) and other fantasy novels by Piers Anthony.