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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 3:53 PM ET

State Bankruptcy: An Idea That's Ready for Primetime?

Posted By: Ash Bennington

Changing federal bankruptcy law to allow individual states to file is an idea that appears to be gathering momentum—and opposition.

Under current US bankruptcy laws, the states are prevented from filing for bankruptcy—as municipalities now are permitted to do in about half the states. But the rhetoric is heating up, according to an article in the LA Times , in the weeks since my colleague Nicole Lapin reported on the topic .

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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 3:26 PM ET

Is Barack Obama's 'Cost-Benefit' Analysis Too Costly?

Posted By: John Carney
President Barack Obama
Photo by: Pete Souza
President Barack Obama

Barack Obama’s editorial in the Wall Street Journal is sure to land him in hot water with the left and perhaps win him a few supporters on the right.

In case you missed the news, the president put his byline over a Wall Street Journal op-ed saying that he will sign an executive order to ensure that federal regulations strike a balance between protecting safety, health and the environment, on the one hand, and economic prosperity, on the other.

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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 2:37 PM ET

RIM, Google and Microsoft: The Ghoul Trade

Posted By: Joshua Brown
AP

Apple is down around 3 percent to 4 percent today on the news of a health-related leave of absence for Steve Jobs. There has been much discussion in the media and among analysts about the "Steve Jobs Premium" and what his day-to-day presence is truly worth in terms of market cap and shareholder value.

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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 12:53 PM ET

Email of the Week: NetNet as a Contrarian Indicator

Posted By: John Carney
Rose | Mueller | Stock4B | Getty Images

A reader by the name of "Jim K." writes in to comment on our coverage of the banking sector. He's a bull who is really hoping we don't change our bearishness.

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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 12:07 PM ET

Tim Pawlenty: Congress Is Sitting on Top of a Ponzi Scheme

Posted By: Lori Ann LaRocco
Tim Pawlenty
Getty Images
Tim Pawlenty

Former Republican Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty may not have officially announced his candidacy for President but the Governor is busy laying out his plan on how to cut the government spending.

Pawlenty is advocating legislation that would block any attempt to raise the debt ceiling, while putting in place a rule prioritizing spending so that the US wouldn't default on its debt when the ceiling is hit.

I spoke with him on this fiscal measure and what the country needs to do before Uncle Sam drives off the fiscal cliff.

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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 12:04 PM ET

Does Medical Leave Pose An Ethical Challenge For Steve Jobs?

Posted By: Lori Ann LaRocco

Apple shareholders got a shock Monday.

While the U.S. markets were closed for the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, Steve Jobs sent a letter to his employees saying he was taking a medical leave of absence but was still retaining his title of CEO. Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook would again be responsible for the day to day activities.

His leave begs the question again of transparency and disclosure. Just how much should the company disclose to its shareholders on their CEOs health and when does disclosing too much breach Jobs' privacy? I decided to ask Bruce Weinstein, BusinessWeek.com's Ethics Columnist those questions.

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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 12:02 PM ET

Eurozone Policy: Still a Work in Progress?

Posted By: Ash Bennington
Euro bills and coins
AP
Euro bills and coins

What exactly is the balance of supranational versus national monetary policy in the Eurozone?

It's an excellent question: And, if the ongoing policy parsing over Ireland is any indications, it's an issue that's far from closed.

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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 11:49 AM ET

Get Ready For Another Housing Crash

Posted By: John Carney
Foreclosure
Fuse | Getty Images
Foreclosure

The best evidence that we're headed for a double-dip in housing is the quality of the mortgages during the recent period in which the housing market seemed to improve in many areas.

In the Freddie Mac review of Citigroup’s performing loans that I mentioned earlier today, the portion rated as “Not Acceptable Quality” was as high as 32 percent in the fourth quarter of 2009. While this has obvious implications for the repurchase or "put-back" liability of Citigroup , it also has broader implications for the housing market and the economy.

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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 11:12 AM ET

Did Goldman Just Admit That It Leaked The Facebook Offering?

Posted By: John Carney
Goldman Sachs
Getty Images
Goldman Sachs

While the news that Goldman Sachs is restricting its Facebook investment fund to investors outside the US is already prompting cries that US securities regulations have become perverse, the media seem to be missing an important part of this story. It seems fairly likely that Goldman has discovered—or fears the government will discover—that the news of the proposed $1.5 billion Facebook fund came from within Goldman Sachs itself.

Andrew Ross Sorkin, who broke the news of Goldman's investment and fund with Susan Craig, explains why Goldman now believes it must restrict its offering to non-US investors:

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  Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 | 11:11 AM ET

Looking for a New Theme for Your Nightmares:Try Smallpox

Posted By: Ash Bennington
Biochemical Warefare Masks
Getty Images
Biochemical Warefare Masks

Smallpox is the only disease in human history to be eradicated through vaccination. So why on earth would anyone want to maintain disease stocks of the horrible virus in laboratories? In a word: Bioterrorism.

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  • 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 CNBC's 5pm ET show "Fast Money."

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