Higher than normal anxiety likely will greet Wall Street’s opening today as the Federal Reserve Board in Washington gets set to make an afternoon policy announcement. Markets fell yesterday an anticipation: The S&P fell .3% to 1,781; The Dow dropped 10-points to 15,875; the Nasdaq slipped .1% to 4,024. Gold rose $3 to $1,233/ounce. Oil added 4-cents to $97.27/Barrel.
Economists who are watching the richest Americans get richer, while the rest are holding steady, at best, are worried about the impact it will have on the economy. About 80% of stock market wealth is held by the richest ten-percent of Americans. That means the stock market’s outsized gains this year have mostly benefited the already-affluent.
Hewlett-Packard is giving CEO Meg Whitman a huge pay raise as she enters the third year of her attempt to turn around the slumping personal computer and printer maker. Whitman agreed to limit her salary to $1.00 when she was hired in 2011. Her new pay rate: $1.5-Million.
Houston home sales in November hit new highs, but also showed some tapering: The median price of a single-family home rose 9% to $181,000. The average price increased just over 8% to $246,000. Both are all-time highs for November. 5,108 single family homes were sold last month.
Southwest Airlines is capitalizing on its new slot acquisitions at New York’s LaGuardia Airport, increasing service from Houston to New York starting in May. Dallas’ Love Field could also get flights to the Big Apple and other big destinations when the Wright Amendment is repealed next year.
Perhaps not the Tweet heard ’round the world, but a query from Houston Dynamo President Chris Canetti is credited for sparking the notion to bring the National Women’s Soccer Leagues ninth team to Houston. The hash-tag, #NWSLHouston amassed 3,000 followers within 24-hours.
EDITOR’s NOTE: Special appreciation to my colleague, Martha Martinez, for filling in during my bout with chronic laryngitis!