Brian Banmiller's blog

Turning a Profit

Millions of Americans are out of work. We’re in a recession and the government is busy bailing out big companies. So how can you turn all this bad news into a profit?

As a country America has been in even worse positions before and while it’s hard to predict when things will turn around there are actually some bright sides to consider. Investment analyst Ken Winans says with the fed pumping money into the economy and this new stimulus package in the works people might be able to find a little more money in their pockets. Winans says there is still profit in a recession.  read more »

Mistakes to Avoid in 2009

This is the time of year for resolutions. So what should you do to succeed in this tricky economic environment? More important, what past mistakes you should absolutely avoid?

Last year gave all of us a lesson in tough love. So how can we profit from the bad news to help us tackle the uncertain future. Ken Winans is an investment analyst and founder of Winans International and says that most people are still in shock and denial and are expecting the government to bail them out. But it’s not the government’s job to help people make ends meet. Winans says people need to face their own economic reality.  read more »

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Network News Re-runs

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Remember when the main goal of network TV news divisions was to fight to make sure they broke the big story before the competition? Now it seems they are falling all over each other to make sure you see that big story, over and over again.

When I started out in local television news, it was considered heresy to run the same story twice. If you could not find enough stories to fill a newscast you just weren’t good enough. How times and budgets have changed.  read more »

Trust: Can it make a Comeback?

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I may be dating myself but I actually do remember when deals were closed with a handshake. And when someone said “My word is my bond” you simply believed it. Or when a customer said “The check is in the mail” it really was. Trust was the grease that made the wheels of commerce turn more efficiently.

Not anymore. And that lack of trust is threatening to deal a body blow to our way of life.

Certainly one can argue that greed and deceit have been part of business dealings since the dawn of commerce. And maybe our 24 hour news cycle just makes us more aware of human weakness. But somehow we never dreamed that lying, cheating and stealing could get so rampant as to permanently damage or bring down the entire U-S economy.

Now I am not so sure.  read more »


On Jan. 31, Steve Ballmer, CEO of the software giant Microsoft, sent a letter to the board of directors of Yahoo, offering to buy the Web company for $31 a share — a 62% premium to what the stock was trading for at the time. Yahoo rebuffed the offer, saying it vastly understated what the company was worth. Since then, Yahoo has watched its shares become worth 60% less, as investors grow ever-more-disenchanted with how the firm stacks up to Google in the game of squeezing ad revenue from the Internet. In November, Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang stepped down and the company made overtures that it might be open to a Microsoft deal. Ballmer has said in no uncertain terms that he's no longer interested in buying Yahoo.


Flying Private Not So Profitable


AvWeb, one of aviations leading independent aviation news sources, had this interesting article on its daily web site. It shows just how cyclical the aviation business is, and how it reflects the boom-bust cycles of our economy.

“The argument for business jets as essential tools for business may see some conflicts in tight economic times as businesses seeking to control costs are selling their jets and corporate jet brokers watch their inventories soar. Where manufacturers recently had waiting lists of people seeking positions on non-resalable deposit lists the trend has now reversed.  read more »

Professor Auto Worker, Ph.D

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I receive a lot of opinionated e-mails from friends and business associates who document their passionate positions on issues of the day with facts and figures gleaned from related web sites to bolster their views.

Sometimes it is difficult to trace the origin and validity of such information in our blog infested environment, as e-mails are passed on to others at the click of a mouse. So I most often take a pass at passing them on.

But I did receive an interesting e-mail yesterday that I think worthy of forwarding, with the caveat that I do not know the true source of all the material, or its original author. Still, I think it offers a view worth considering in part because this issue is dominating business news. So here goes:  read more »

Preparing For The Worst

In this economy layoffs are becoming rampant but that doesn’t mean people are prepared for them.

It’s been a year of bad news for the U.S. economy and things have yet to turn around. Currently 6.7 percent of people are without work and thousands are applying for a handful of jobs. People in all industries from publishing to financing are being laid off. The big three automakers have announced they are slowing down production and temporarily laying-off all employees.

Camelia Lim is a regional Vice President at Robert half International who works to get people temporary or full time jobs. She says if you suspect a lay-off consider other options within the company.  read more »

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Sacrifices Will Be Made

It’s that time of year for celebrations and bonuses. But this year you shouldn’t get too excited.

With the country in recession sacrifices are being made everywhere. Families are cutting back on vacations, Christmas shopping is at its lowest level since the early 90’s and budgets are tight. Employers are also jumping on the sacrificial wagon, so you may be noticing more changes around the office.

So how do you deal with this in a professional way? Camelia Lim is a Vice President at staffing and consulting firm Robert Half International and says it’s all about your attitude.  read more »

Not So Happy New Year

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I hate to be yet another pessimistic journalist more interested in dishing out bad news than trying to find a silver lining somewhere in this bad economy. But unfortunately, any silver lining seems to quickly get tarnished.

This recession will indeed be long and harsh. The reason is simple. The worst is yet to be.

Some retailers who are hanging on through the Christmas season will not survive into the New Year. They will shutter their doors and stiff their landlords. That will have a trickledown effect in commercial Real Estate, as shopping mall operators and developers realize they will not have the money to re-finance loans coming due.  read more »