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  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 4:01 PM ET

Rajat Gupta's Weird and Weak 'No Profits' Defense

Posted By: John Carney
Rajat Gupta
Getty Images
Rajat Gupta

Rajat Gupta vigorously denies the insider trading charges the SEC has lodged against him, calling them “totally baseless.”

The circumstantial evidence against Gupta, however, is very strong. In fact, the pattern of behavior alleged by the SEC—obtaining confidential board information and then immediately calling Raj Rajaratnam, the man who then traded on the stocks—is damning.

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  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 3:54 PM ET

Why Do Smart Men Date Dumb Girls?

Posted By: John Carney
Source: Paramount Pictures

Recently my friend Jennifer Wright at TheGloss.com came across another study purporting to show that men prefer to date women who are less intelligent than they are. She asked me about why this might be, assuming it was true at all.

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  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 3:23 PM ET

Roubini Points Out the Uncanny Resemblance Between Gaddafi and Galliano

Posted By: Cadie Thompson

I guess I can kind of see it.

»Read more
  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 2:47 PM ET

Nouriel Roubini's Firm Says Muni Defaults Could Reach $100 Billion

Posted By: Ash Bennington
Nouriel Roubini
CNBC.com
Nouriel Roubini

Municipal bond defaults could hit the $100 billion market over the next five years, according to a new estimate from Roubini Global Economics.

This comes just after Moody's chief economist Mark Zandi estimated the chance of significant defaults to be zero.

Although $100 billion of defaults spread over five years would be much higher than the estimates of the muni optimists, his firm's figures would appear to be less cataclysmic than those suggested by Meredith Whitney.

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  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 1:49 PM ET

Will ‘Inflation Effect’ Overcome the ‘Wealth Effect’?

Posted By: Jeff Cox
Deborah Harrison | Getty Images

As each day passes, with oil, gold and other commodities scaling either multi-year or historic highs, the denials of inflation become harder to maintain.

Call it the “inflation effect,”—the antithesis of Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke’s “wealth effect” that helped convince Americans rising stock prices equated to greater wealth even while employment and housing lagged far behind.

In the case of inflation, some of the more conventional measures insist the phenomenon of too much money chasing too few goods has not taken hold. Government indicators for personal and producer prices remain tame, while there appears to be little of the wage pressure that also is a typical partner to rising inflation.

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  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 12:59 PM ET

East Coast 'Entourage' Features Unemployed Former Bear Employee

Posted By: Ash Bennington
Ed Burns
Gary Gershoff | WireImage | Getty Images
Ed Burns

Ed Burns will play an unemployed former Bear Stearns employee in a new series produced by the creator of Entourage.

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  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 12:08 PM ET

Broun: "Obamacare" Will Push All States Into Severe Economic Problems

Posted By: Lori Ann LaRocco

We have been seeing the budget battles of some states playing out in the form of protests and now more than ever the fiscal challenges facing many states are making headlines almost on a daily basis.

One of the expenditures states are required to pay for is providing Medicaid coverage and with the passage of health care reform more individuals will be rolled into the program.

On Tuesday, three governors—Haley Barbour (R-MS), Gary Herbert (R-UT) and Deval Patrick (D-MA) descended into Washington, testifying before the House Energy Commerce Committee on the burdens imposed by health care reform.

I caught up with two House members, both former practicing MD's—Rep. Michael Burgess \(R-TX\) and Rep. Paul Broun \(R-GA\) on the price tag of health care reform and the impact it could have on the quality of health care.

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  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 11:22 AM ET

Will Rajat Gupta Destroy McKinsey?

Posted By: John Carney
Rajat Gupta
Umesh Goswami | The India Today Group | Getty Images
Rajat Gupta

McKinsey & Co is reeling from the revelation that the Securities and Exchange Commission believes one of its most high-flying alumni gave corporate secrets to a hedge fund manager who is now accused of being at the center of a large and complex insider trading scheme.

For a firm that thrives on its reputation, proximity to misdeeds of this sort could be fatal, according to former McKinsey consultants who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

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  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 10:53 AM ET

Drink the Recession Away? Bottoms Not Up!

Posted By: Nicole Lapin
Jack Andersen | FoodPix | Getty Images

So, during tough economic times, you'd think people drink their sorrows away. Apparently not so much. I was surprised to find that US beer sales were down an estimated 2.7 percent by volume for the first half of 2010.

So who's winning? The craft, microbrews, like the newly-public Kona Brewing . The CEO rolled on set this morning in flipflops and a Hawaiian shirt, straight off the plane from paradise. \(Seriously, he gets paid to drink beer and live in Hawaii—tough life but someone's gotta do it.\)

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  Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 10:11 AM ET

China Still US's Largest Creditor, Probably

Posted By: Ash Bennington
Flag of the People's Republic of China
Eriko Koga | The Image Bank | Getty Images
Flag of the People's Republic of China

Earlier this week the U.S. Treasury released its Preliminary Report on Foreign Holdings of U.S. Securities.

This report contains the preliminary revised annual numbers from the Department of Treasury.

As Cardiff Garcia at the Financial Times Alphaville explains , these revised annual reports are generally thought to be more accurate than the monthly Treasury International Capital System \(TIC\) data.

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About NetNet

  • NetNet is where you'll find the low-down and the high jinks of Wall Street. It's the place for insider stories, trader gossip, and tales of the foibles of the moneyed crowd and the culture of finance.Wall Street news and commentary served fresh all day long.

 

  • Jeff Cox is finance editor for CNBC.com.

  • Lawrence Develingne

    Lawrence Delevingne is the ‘Big Money’ enterprise reporter for CNBC.com and NetNet.

  • Stephanie Landsman is one of the producers of "Fast Money."

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