Five Things We're Watching: March 15, 2011
?Japan combats crisis, the Fed considers inflation and Henry Kravis says hello. Here's some of what we’re watching — and which you should too.?
?Disaster in Japan: As emergency response efforts continue in Japan following the 9.0 magnitude earthquake and ensuing tsunami, officials are battling to keep a handful of failing nuclear plants from melting down. The fuel rods at Fukushima Daiichi plant have been fully exposed on two occasions, raising worries of a larger catastrophe. Germany announced it would postpone plans to extend the life of various nuclear facilities Monday, demonstrating how the worries in Japan may have far-reaching consequences for the industry globally. But what's in mind are the safety and recovery of the Japanese people and avoidance of a potential nuclear disaster.?
Inflation Nation: Inflation fears may change the tune of the Fed when the FOMC meets for its periodic policy meeting on Tuesday. Higher food and energy prices have hit the consumer hard. The market eagerly anticipates dissecting the language used by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke and company when it's released in a 2:00pm ET hour statement. Of course, the further question is whether economic circumstances will have any effect on the Federal Reserve's $600 billion bond-buying program. Ahead of the news, CNBC senior economics reporter Steve Liesman rolls out our exclusive CNBC survey, analyzing what the smart money expects from Fed policy going forward.?
Barbarians Open the Gates: For the first time in its 30-plus year history, private equity titan Kohlberg, Kravis & Roberts (KKR) opens its doors to the public (read: media) with its Tuesday investor meeting. Nearly all of KKR's heads of state — including founders Henry Kravis and George Roberts — are expected to speak throughout the day. "Following in Blackstone's footsteps" probably isn't how the firm would articulate its strategy, but recent moves indicate a shift to more diverse services … beyond KKR's LBO roots and in the vein of its rival. CNBC’s Kate Kelly reports the news from inside the room.?
The Markets Room: It's the "Norad" of American finance, a secure basement bunker where the government monitors global financial conditions for any sign of incoming threats. Treasury calls it simply "The Markets Room," and it's where Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner gets his minute-to-minute information on economic conditions, and where a team of market experts writes a daily economic briefing for President Obama. CNBC's Eamon Javers will be the first reporter to broadcast live from inside the Markets Room, interviewing Michael Pedroni, the 38-year-old former IMF and NY Fed analyst who oversees the operation.?
Talking Tiger: The world's best golfer (or, according to the current golf rankings, the world's fifth best golfer), Tiger Woods joins CNBC’s Scott Wapner on Squawk Box Tuesday for an all-access interview. Ahead of the year's first major, Tiger talks about his return to form, his preparation for the Masters, and his sweeping business interests.?.. and if we're lucky, he might just chime in on #TigerBlood.