Candy makers are moving production offshore due to government regulations. JP Morgan is negotiating with the regulators. At the same time, 15 million young Americans are doing nothing.
Candy Makers expand production abroad
Despite a 50 percent drop in US sugar prices in the last two years, US candy makers are expanding production in other countries. The Wall Street Journal reports that the primary reason is due to federal price supports and a global over-supply that makes sugar in foreign countries even cheaper than in the US. Sugar prices in the US cannot get much lower because of a program that guarantees sugar producers a minimum price. The rest of the world has no minimum prices. Atkinson Candy has moved 80 percent of its peppermint production to Guatemala. Jelly Belly Candy Co. is finishing its second expansion in Thailand. Total US confectionary-manufacturing employment sank 22 percent in 2011 compared to 1998 to about 55,000 jobs. The number of industry manufacturing locations in the US fell 7.7 percent to about 1600. Candy manufacturers blame the over-regulation of the markets by the government in the US.
Fifteen percent of US youth out of school and work
Almost 6 million young people are neither in school nor working, according to the Associated Press. The Opportunity Nation coalition indicates that 15 percent of those aged 16 to 24 are missing out on the opportunity to build skills they will need later in life. The report tracked 16 factors that assist young people in doing well. Those factors include: Internet access, college graduation rates, income equality and public safety. The states doing the best job supporting their young people include Vermont, Minnesota and North Dakota. Those doing the worst are Nevada, Mississippi, and New Mexico.
JP Morgan Chase reaches tentative deal
JP Morgan Chase & Co reached a tentative deal to pay $13 billion to end a number of civil investigations into its sale of mortgage securities before the 2008 financial crisis. A more serious potential criminal probe will continue. The Wall Street Journal reports that the Justice Department feels it has strong evidence related to the bank’s conduct and wants to send a message to Wall Street and agreed only to end the civil investigations. The bank is seen to be facing an uphill battle in Washington because the “London whale” trading issue in the bank’s UK headquarters tarnished its reputation.
Tablet makers begin holiday competition
On Tuesday, Apple, Nokia and Microsoft will each introduce new tablets to compete against other tablets from Amazon, Google and Samsung. Demand for tablets has increased significantly in recent years with 120 million tablets shipped in 2012, seven times as many as were shipped in 2010. According to the New York Times, Apple maintains the lead in the worldwide tablet market at 32 percent, but Samsung is quickly gaining traction at 18 percent. Apple is expected announce significantly upgraded versions of its iPad and iPad Mini this week. Microsoft will release new versions of its Surface tablets and Nokia will introduce a new tablet in Abu Dhabi. Microsoft is going after professionals while Samsung caters to artists. Apple’s tablet is branded to be for both work and play while Amazon is the low-cost provider.
McDonalds’s revenue misses estimates
McDonald’s reported quarterly revenue that missed analysts’ estimates and warned that global sales for October are relatively flat. Sales at stores open more than 12 months rose 0.9 percent in the third quarter, below the analysts’ expectations of 1 percent. Reuters reports that a recent survey by Goldman Sachs indicates that McDonald’s has been slower in introducing popular new menu items than its competitors. McDonald’s previously got a bump from new products such as oatmeal, sandwich wraps and lattes, but the more complicated menu has been criticized for slowing service at the drive-thru. Revenue rose to $1.52 billion or $1.52 per share for the third quarter, up from $1.46 billion or $1.43 a year ago.
Catherine S. McBreen is President of Millionaire Corner. McBreen plans and develops content for Millionaire Corner. Catherine balances editorial content to meet the informational needs of both new and seasoned investors. She designs special monthly surveys on topical issues affecting the economic environment.
McBreen has a B.S. in speech communications from Northwestern University and a J.D. from DePail University College of Law. She is a member of the American Bar Association, the Illinois Bar Association, and the Chicago Bar Association.
Well-known for her expertise in the affluent and retirement arenas, McBreen is a frequent speaker at industry conferences. She has been quoted widely by the financial media, including The Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, Research, Private Asset Management, On Wall Street, Reuters, Bloomberg News, The Dow Jones Newswires and Worth. Cathy has appeared as a guest on CNBC Closing Bell, First Business Morning News, Neal Cavuto at Fox Business News, ABC and CBS radio.
McBreen is co-author with Spectrem President George H. Walper, Jr. of the book "Get Rich, Stay Rich, Pass It On: The Wealth-Accumulation Secrets of America's Richest Families" (Portfolio, January 2008)
Catherine is the mother of four and is involved in many school and community events.