Saturday, January 31, 2009

Financial Crisis Timeline: January 2009

Jan 5 2009: Obama pushes for new stimulus plan
President elect Barak Obama met with members of congress for the approval of the new $770 billion stimulus plan over 2 years that seeks $310 billion in tax cuts.

Jan 6 2009: Cigna to layoff 1,100
Cigna Corp. said it would cut 1,100 jobs worldwide.

Jan 6 2009: Alcoa to cut 13,500 jobs
Pittsburgh based Alcoa, the world’s third largest aluminum manufacturer will cut 13,500 jobs (13% of workforce) and slash spending and output to cope with the economic slowdown. It will also relieve around 1,700 contractors in addition.

Jan 8 2009: Citigroup supports plan to adjust mortgages in bankruptcies
Citigroup has agreed to a plan that would let bankruptcy judges alter mortgages in an effort to prevent more housing foreclosures.

Jan 8 2009: Wal-Mart slashes forecasts
Wal-Mart lowered its earnings forecast to 91-94 cents a share for its fiscal fourth quarter, from its prior guidance of $1.03 to $1.07 a share, issued in November. This was mainly due to the fact that Wal-Mart missed the same store sales forecasts for December.

Jan 8 2009: Nissan to cut 12,000 jobs
Japan’s Nissan, the third largest auto manufacturer in the country, announced it would cut 1,200 jobs at a UK factory due to dramatic decline in demand

Jan 8 2009: Lenovo to cut 2,500 jobs
China’s computer manufacturer, Lenovo, will cut 2,500 jobs, or 11% of its work force, around the world in a bid to enhance savings.

Jan 8 2009: TDK to layoff 9000 workers
Japan’s Electronic components manufacturer announced that it would layoff 9000 workers and close four plants overseas due to drop in demand.

Jan 8 2009: Billion dollar Satyam fraud shakes Indian market
Indian stocks plunged 7.2% yesterday as Satyam’s chairman Ramalinga Raju admitted the Hyderabad-based software services firm overstated its cash and bank balances by $1.03 billion in its September end balance sheet. Satyam shares fell 77.69%.

Jan 9 2009: Unemployment highest since 1945
According to a US Labor Department report, United States lost 2.6 million jobs in 2008, highest since 1945 when 2.8 millions jobs were cut. Unemployment reached 7.2% nationwide in December, highest in 16 years. Employers slashed 524,000 jobs in December, 584,000 in November 2008 and 423,000 in October 2008.

Jan 9 2009: Morgan Stanley may takeover Smith Barney
Citigroup is in talks with Morgan Stanley to merge their brokerage operations in a deal that could result in Morgan Stanley taking over Citibank’s Smith Barney unit. The move will result in the biggest mortgage in the country (8,000 Morgan Stanley brokers and 11,000 Smith Barney brokers). It would surpass Bank of America’s recently acquired Merrill Lynch brokerage unit (16,000 brokers).

Jan 10 2009: Schlumberger to layoff 1,000 employees
The world’s largest oil fields provider Schlumberger announced it would cut 5% of its North American workforce (up to 1,000 jobs) in response to global slowdown in oil and gas drilling.

Jan 12 2009: Boeing to layoff 4,500
Chicago-based Boeing will layoff 4,500 workers at its Seatle based Airplanes unit that builds wide-body planes such as 747 and 737.

Jan 13 2009: Pfizer to layoff 800 scientists
World’s biggest pharmaceutical company Pfizer announced it would layoff 800 global researchers by the end of the year out of a total of around 10,000 researchers.

Jan 14 2009: Retail sales in December 2008 fall more than expected
The Commerce Department declared total retail sales slumped 2.7% to a seasonally adjusted $343.2 billion in December 2008. November sales fell to a revised 2.1% figure following an earlier estimate of 1.8%.

Jan 14 2009:Nortell Networks files for bankruptcy

Canada based Nortell Networks, the biggest manufacturer of telephone equipment, along with a number of its affiliates filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in US. Its shares fell more than 76% in electronic pre-market trading.

Jan 14 2009: Citigroup to shed “Financial Supermarket” Model
Citigroup announced yesterday it agreed to merge Smith Barney into a joint venture with Morgan Stanley. It is expected to continue selling its assets that would result in dismantling of the financial supermarket model. It could sell assets worth around $600 billion. The Citigroup’s shares today fell below the $5 critical level.

Jan 14 2009: Seagate to shed 2,900 jobs
Seagate Technology announced it would cut 2,900 or 6% of its world-wide work force. This includes 10% reduction in the company’s US work force.

Jan 14 2009: Councils in UK to cut thousands of jobs
The Times reported councils across UK are to cut thousands of jobs that would affect the job market

Jan 14 2009: Barclays lays off 4,200 workers
Barclays today announced it would cut 2,100 workers from its UK banking business, the same number it announced yesterday to be laid off in fund management, private banking and investment banking units.

Jan 14 2009: Freemans Grattan to cut 3,800 UK jobs
Freemans Grattan, British home shopping firm owned by mail order German Otto Group, will cut 3,800 UK jobs due to losses.

Jan 15 2009: Delta Airlines to cut 2,000 jobs
Delta Airlines that bought North West Airlines lat year, is expected to cut 4,000 jobs

Jan 15 2009: Meadwestvaco to cut additional 2,000 jobs
Paper and plastic products manufacturer Meadwestvaco announced it would cut 2,000 jobs. This announcement came just two months after the Virginia based company announced major job cuts.

Jan 15 2009: Holcim to cut 3,300 jobs
Switzerland’s Holcim, one of the largest cement manufacturing groups in the world will layoff 3,300 jobs.

Jan 16 2009: Citigroup splits and announces $8.29 billion loss
Citigroup announced its plan to split into two and announced the fourth quarter loss of $8.29 billion.

Jan 16 2009: Bank of America loses $1.79 billion
Bank of America posted a loss of $1.79 billion in the fourth quarter, its first quarterly loss in 17 years. Bank of America will get a $20 billion life-line from the government to help absorb Merrill Lynch.

Jan 16 2009: Merrill Lynch loses $15.3 billion

Merrill Lynch posted a loss of $15.3 billion in the fourth quarter due to writedowns of troubled assets.

Jan 16 2009: Consumer Price Index falls for third consecutive month
The consumer price index fell 0.7% in December 2008, after falling 1.7% in November.

Jan 16 2009: Deal for Circuit City fails; will be liquidated with 30,000 becoming jobless
It is expected that the deal for selling Circuit City has failed and the company will be fully liquidated. The company had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in November. The liquidation will result in 30,000 employees being laid off.

Jan 16 2009: Chrysler Financial gets $1.5 billion loan
Chrysler’s finance arm, Chrysler Financials will get $1.5 billion from the Treasury for 5 years to fund new car loans and boost sales.

Jan 16 2009: Wellpoint to cut 1,500 jobs
US health insurer Wellpoint will cut 1,500 jobs (3.5% of workforce) to reduce administrative costs.

Jan 16 2009: HSBC stocks hit 10 year low

Shares of Europe’s biggest bank HSBC fell to 543 pence, a 10 year low today (down 0.8%). The rating of the stock has been downgraded by Goldman Sachs.

Jan 16 2009: GE to cut 7,000 – 11,000 jobs
GE Capital Unit will cut between 7,000 to 11,000 jobs and reduce costs by $2 billion at the unit in 2009.

Jan 16 2009: Hertz to layoff 4,000
Rental car company Hertz will cut down 4,000 jobs worldwide to cut costs in the face of growing economic meltdown.

Jan 16 2009: AMD to cut 1,100 jobs
Advanced Micro Devices announced it would cut 1,100 jobs and reduce salaries up to 20% of its top executives due to slowing economy.

Jan 16 2009: ConocoPhillips to cut 4% of its workforce
The third largest US oil company announced it would cut 4% of its workforce and expects big write downs on some of its exploration and production assets.

Jan 19 2009: Second UK government bailout; Bank stocks plummet
The British government is to announce a second bailout package for banks that would guarantee at least 100 billion pounds ($220 billion) of new lending. Bank shares in the UK stock exchange fell drastically despite the bailout. The shares of Lloyd’s Banking Group fell by 34%, while those of Barclays fell by 10%.

Jan 19 2009: RBS to report biggest loss in UK history
RBS would report a loss of 28 billion pounds ($41 US) for 2008, the biggest loss reported in the history of UK. The shares of RBS fell 66% to a 23 year low level. Following the announcement of the new bailout package, the taxpayers’ share in RBS could rise from 57.9% to 70%.

Jan 20 2009: Rohm and Haas to cut 900 additional jobs
The chemical maker, Rohm and Haas, being bought by Dow Chemical will cut 900 jobs in addition to 925 jobs it cut last June.

Jan 21 2009: Singapore’s economy in worst ever recession
Singapore’s economy has entered the worst ever recession as it shrank in the fourth quarter at a seasonally adjusted annualized pace of 16.9%.

Jan 21 2009: Australia’s BHP to cut 6,000 jobs and take a US $1.6 billion hit
BHP Billiton will cut 6,000 jobs (6%) of its work force and lose its giant Ravens Thorpe nickel mine in Australia that would lead to $1.6 billion in impairment charges in FY 2009.

Jan 21 2009: Clear Channel to layoff 1,850 nationwide
San Antonio (TX) based Clear Channel Communications, the world’s largest outdoor advertising company (973,000 displays in 60 countries), will layoff 1,850 employees (9% of workforce) across US in response to sagging economy.

Jan 21 2009: Warner Bros. to cut 800 jobs
Movie Studio Warner Brothers announced it would lay off 800 workers (10% of workforce) in the coming weeks due to the adverse economic conditions.

Jan 22 2009: Ericsson to cut 5,000 jobs
The fourth quarter profit in 2008 has been announced as 1.7 billion Swedish kronors less than for the same quarter in 2007. Ericsson has blamed restructuring and losses faced by Sony Ericsson for the drop. The company is laying off 5,000 global workers, mainly consultants and other temporary staff.

Jan 22 2009: Sun Microsystems to layoff 5,000 employees
Sun Microsystems laid off 1,300 employees and said that 5,000 people might lose their jobs in the next 18 months.

Jan 22 2009: Intel to shut 4 plants and layoff 6,000 workers
Intel Corp. announced it would shut down 4 chip plants (one each in Oregon, California, Malaysia and Philippines) and layoff 6,000 workers worldwide.

Jan 22 2009: Samsung declares first ever quarterly net and operating loss
South Korea’s Samsung Electronics posted first ever quarterly net and operating loss due to weak chip sales and decline in flatscreen sales. The company announced net operating loss of US $16.16 million in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Jan 22 2009: Huntsman to close UK plant; cut 1,175 jobs
US chemical manufacturer Huntsman (Woodlands, Texas based) announced it would cut 1,175 jobs and close a titanium dioxide plant in UK.

Jan 22 2009: AMD suffers a loss of $1.4 billion
Sunnyvale, California based Advanced Micro Devises suffered a net loss of US $1.4 billion in the fourth quarter of 2008. The net loss for the same quarter in 2007 was US $1.8 billion.

Jan 23 2009: Microsoft $1 billion short in sales target; will cut 5,000 jobs
Microsoft missed the fourth quarter sales target by $1billion US due to sluggish PC market and due to customers shifting to low cost “netbooks. Microsoft has announced that it would be laying off 5,000 workers in the next 18 months, first such layoffs since its foundation 34 years ago.

Jan 26 2009: Earnings of American Express fall
Fourth quarter earnings of American Express fell by 72% due to higher loan losses, lower customer spending and a strengthening US dollar.

Jan 26 2009: Texas Instruments’ profits fall; will cut 3,400 jobs
Texas Instruments announced it would cut 12% of its workforce or 3,400 jobs after posting a quarterly fall in profits.

Jan 26 2009: US financier arrested due to $400 million ponzi scheme
Nicholas Cosmo, Chief Executive of Agape World Inc. based in New York has been arrested due to allegedly running a “ponzi” scheme worth $400 million.

Jan 26 2009: Fannie Mai could need $16 billion
Mortgage Finance Company Fannie Mai could need $16 billion from US government through taxpayers’ aid. Freddie Mac last week said it needed $35 billion from government in addition to $13.8 billion it received last year.

Jan 26 2009: Corus to cut 3,500 jobs
Tata’s Corus, Europe’s second largest steel maker will cut 3,500 jobs in UK and Netherlands following collapse in demand from car manufacturers and builders.

Jan 26 2009: Phillips to cut 6,000 jobs
Consumer Electronics giant Phillips is planning to cut 6,000 of its global workforce due to fourth quarter losses in 2008 that amounted to roughly $1.9 billion.

Jan 26 2009: Sprint to cut 8,000 jobs
Sprint plans to cut 8,000 jobs (14% of workforce) by the end of March after an ill-fated merger with Nextel.

Jan 26 2009: ING to layoff 7,000 workers
ING Group, the biggest Dutch financial services company, will cut 7,000 jobs (5.4% of workforce) following the second successive quarterly loss. The company is expected to post a 1 billion Euro loss for the year 2008.

Jan 26 2009: Home Depot to layoff 7,000 employees
Home Depot is cutting 7,000 positions due to the slump in housing activity. The company will also close several stores.

Jan 26 2009: Caterpillar to layoff 20,000 jobs
The heavy machinery maker Caterpillar will be cutting 20,000 jobs or 18% of its workforce.

Jan 26 2009: Starbucks to layoff 1,000 additional employees
Coffee giant Star Bucks will be laying off 1,000 additional employees due to some new problems that the company is facing.

Jan 27 2009: Best Buy to cut jobs
Best Buy will cut an unknown number of jobs in addition to 500 workers who agreed to leave voluntarily.

Jan 28 2009: Obama wins the new $825 billion Stimulus Package from House
The US House of Representatives passed Obama’s $825 billion economic stimulus package on a 244-188 vote. The package will offer $275 billion in tax cuts and $550 billion in spending.

Jan 28 2009: Wells Fargo loses $2.55 billion
Wells Fargo announced the first quarterly loss of $2.55 billion since 2001. Its stocks soared 31%.

Jan 28 2009: Target to cut 9% of headquarters staff and close distribution center
Discount retailer Target Corp. will cut 9% of its headquarters staff, close a distribution center and reduce planned store openings. The affected jobs will total to around 1,500.

Jan 29 2009: Boeing to cut 10,000 world-wide jobs
Boeing whose net income fell 34% in 20008 to $2.7 billion, announced it would cut 10,000 world-wide jobs in 2009 as order cancellations mount.

Jan 29 2009: Startbucks to close 300 stores; cut 6,000 jobs
Startbucks will be closing 300 stores and layoff 6,000 workers as losses rise.

Jan 30 2009: US GDP sinks to the lowest in a quarter-century
The US economy shrank at 3.8% pace at the end of 2008 which is the worst in last 25 years. The figures are expected to be revised even lower in the months to come.

Jan 30 2009: Cessna to cut 4,600 US jobs
Cessna Aircraft Co. announced to cut 2,000 jobs in addition to 2,600 indicated earlier.

Jan 31 2009: NEC to cut 20,000 jobs
Japanese electronics giant NEC will cut 20,000 Japanese and world-wide jobs as it lost 129 billion Yens in the last nine months.


  1. If this doesn't make you want to fly to Washington and slap your legislator, nothing ever will. Congress gives itself a $93,000 raise to stimulate the economy. It must be nice to have that kind of extra petty cash laying around. Instead of tightening your belt in this recession, wouldn't you like an extra $90,000? Never mind the record deficits. Never mind that ordinary Americans are struggling to pay their bills. Our Congress thinks it is far more important to be able to dole out perks to itself.

  2. Its sad to see so many Americans worried about how to earn bread while the politicians are playing continue to play their games. And its not only the politicians. Just look at the already rich top management of private organications who took the bailout money. Many of them paid themselves huge bonuses and spent lavishly on themselves. This is crminal in times like these.