The Breakdown

Explaining Southern California's economy

Reportings: Big September for cars; boring iPhone; Solyndragate II; Michael Lewis

Are bailed-out and formerly bankrupt U.S. car companies now recession-proof? Both General Motors and Chrysler had a big September: "General Motors Co. said its U.S. sales jumped 20% to 207,145 vehicles compared with September 2010. Chrysler Group's sales surged 27% to 127,334 vehicles, marking the company's best September since 2007." (LAT)

Is the Apple iPhone too grown up to have a wow factor? "'Industrial design is important, but in these small packages we are starting to bump into the laws of physics,' said Tim Bajarin, a consultant with Creative Strategies Inc. 'You aren't going to do anything that I would consider radical in design and still get this feature set and function.'" (WSJ) 

Paul Krugman gets on China's case and highlights the massive U.S. trade deficit: "A return to economic health would look much more achievable if we weren’t spending $500 billion more each year on imported goods and services than foreigners spent on our exports." (NYT)  

Solyndragate II, the underground-boiling-water-in-Nevada version: "In a remote desert spot in northern Nevada, there is a geothermal plant run by a politically connected clean energy start-up that has relied heavily on an Obama administration loan guarantee and is now facing financial turmoil." (NYT)

Everything you ever wanted to know about "Moneyball" author Michael Lewis: "Lewis is often referred to as a business writer, and this is sort of true, in that his narratives usually focus on some kind of market, be it for bonds or baseball players. But he’s a business writer only in the same way that Malcolm Gladwell is a business writer. What most interests him are people and how they behave." (NYMag)

How the subprime mortgage business fell apart at Countrywide — big time: "…Countrywide culture, especially towards the end of the real estate boom, centered on volume at all costs. So it's not difficult to imagine how things could have gotten so out of hand." (Lacter)

Follow Matthew DeBord and the DeBord Report on Twitter.

Photo: Lauren Fievet/Getty Images

blog comments powered by Disqus

Enjoy reading The Breakdown? You might like KPCC’s other blogs.

What's popular now on KPCC