With news of the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Affordable Care Act sweeping up every bit of news coverage imaginable today, I second BuzzFeed’s advice: keep your eye on the news dump. Today is a marvelous day for heavy news items to disappear in the news cycle. Case in point:
When Jamie Dimon, the bank’s chief executive, announced in May that the bank had lost $2 billion in a bet on credit derivatives, he estimated that losses could double within the next few quarters. But the red ink has been mounting in recent weeks, as the bank has been unwinding its positions, according to interviews with current and former traders and executives at the bank who asked not to be named because of investigations into the bank. [ via NY Times]
News Corp will now pursue its plan to split into two companies: One for its entertainment properties —- including the Fox News Channel —- another for its publishing properties, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Post, and a number of UK papers. Murdoch, who will continue to serve as chairman of both companies and CEO of the entertainment side, will oversee the transition. [via Politico]
And the gem…
The suit challenges the cap on the total amount of money that one person may give to political candidates, parties and some types of political action committees during a two-year election cycle. […]
If McCutcheon and the RNC are successful, it would mean that one person could give more than $2 million to candidates and party committees if they divided the money among House and Senate members and various state parties. [via WaPo]
[Photo: Saul Loeb/Getty Images/ Buzzfeed]
Frontpage: Friday, May 18th
- Zuckerberg Rings Opening Bell: Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg rang the Wall Street opening bell Friday, the day his company is set to debut on the market. Facebook will start trading stocks on the open market at 11 a.m. Friday, 90 minutes after the New York Stock Exchange opens, and a share will be traded at $38, giving the company a $104 billion valuation.
- Detective: Trayvon Didn’t Start Fight: The lead detective in the case against George Zimmerman’s alleged shooting of Trayvon Martin said he believes Zimmerman caused the fight by getting out of his car to confront Martin, and believes the Florida neighborhood-watch volunteer should be charged with manslaughter.
- Dimon Will Testify Before Congress: It’s been a rough few days for JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon. First came news that his company suffered a $2 billion trading loss. Then came reports that the loss might be closer to $3 billion. Now, Dimon is going to have to go before the Senate Banking Committee to explain what happened.
- Syria Warns Arab Nations: Gulf powers like Saudi Arabia and Qatar have argued that Syrian insurgents should be supplied with weapons, and Assad’s government has repeatedly accused countries of backing a “terrorist” campaign.
- Netanyahu: Iran isn’t Serious About Nuke Talks: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Friday he doesn’t believe Iran is serious about ending its nuclear program.
Photo via picturedept:
Photo of the Day: May 17, 2012
The Heat is On
A boy leads his goat past a parched pond in India.
Frontpage: Thursday, May 17th
- Mladic Applauds Self in Court: Before his trial was suspended indefinitely Thursday due to the prosecution’s errors, former Bosnian Serb general Ratko Mladic nodded, smiled and clapped his hands on his lap as 16-year-old footage was shown at his U.N. war crimes tribunal.
- Whites Below Half U.S. Births: White people have been on the way out in America for a long time, but it’s finally official: the U.S. Census Bureau announced Thursday that, of all births in the 12-month period ending in July 2011, non-Hispanic white babies made up less than half.
- RFK Jr.’s Estranged Wife Found Dead: Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s estranged wife, Mary Kennedy, was found dead in her home on Wednesday in an apparent suicide. An official with Westchester County in New York confirmed the death of the 52-year-old after an ambulance was outside the separated couple’s home earlier in the day.
- Straw: I ‘Gossiped’ with Brooks: Britain’s former Home Secretary Jack Straw testified Thursday that he and Rebekah Brooks, the former head of News International, would “gossip” together when they commuted on the train.
- JPMorgan Loss Could Reach $3B: JPMorgan’s trading loss disclosed last week could be higher than the $2 billion initially thought—50 percent higher. Last Thursday, when CEO Jamie Dimon announced the loss he mentioned it could mushroom in the coming months because of the market.
Photo of the Day: May 16, 2012
The Role of Prince Charming
Alec Baldwin carries fiancee Hilaria Thomas up stairs at the red carpet at Cannes.
Frontpage: Wednesday, May 16th
- Mladic War Crimes Trial Begins: The trial of Ratko Mladic, the man accused of being responsible for the bloodiest genocide in Europe since World War II, began on Wednesday at The Hague, 17 years after the Bosnian conflict ended. Mladic is charged with 11 counts, including two counts of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity during the Bosnian conflict, including the massacre of 8,000 Muslims in Srebrenica.
- Greeks Pulling Funds From Banks: Greeks are withdrawing euros from banks over fear of the country exiting the single currency and the rapid devaluation they would suffer as a result. In a meeting between Greek President Karolos Papoulias and political leaders, Papoulias spoke of the “fear that could develop into panic” at the country’s banks as the political parties failed to form a coalition government and a new election was announced.
- Romney Wins Nebraska, Oregon Primaries: And the winner is … Mitt Romney! The former Massachusetts governor had no problem running to victory in both Nebraska and Oregon on Tuesday night, winning nearly 70 percent of the vote in the Cornhusker State with three quarters of precincts reporting.
- Facebook IPO Could Top $16B: Facebook will increase the size of its initial public offering by 25 percent, a source told Reuters on Wednesday—meaning the company could raise as much as $16 billion before its shares go public on Friday. If the IPO is increased, it will be the third-largest initial share sale in history, after Visa and General Motors.
- Russian Cops Break Up Protest Camp: Russian police ousted political protesters from a campsite in Moscow early Wednesday morning, a day after a judge ordered the site be cleared because of complaints from neighborhood residents. Police had initially said they wouldn’t move in until noon against “OccupyAbai,” named after the statue of a 19th-century Kazakh writer in Chistye Prudy park, but instead swooped at 5:30 a.m.
Photo: JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon attends a session at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Jan. 27, 2011. (Vincent Kessler / Landov) Read: “Dimon’s Unshakbale Hubris.”
Frontpage: Monday, May 14th
- Majority Supports Same-Sex Unions: A week after President Obama announced his personal support for same-sex marriage rights, a new CBS/New York Times poll shows that 38 percent of Americans believe gay couples should be allowed to marry, while another 24 percent support same-sex civil unions. Thirty-three percent of Americans feel there should be no legal recognition available for gay couples at all.
- Plane Crash in Nepal Kills 15: A plane carrying 21 people, most of them Indian nationals, crashed into a hillside Monday as it descended to land at a Nepalese airport. Many of the passengers were en route to the Muktinath temple, a religious site in the mountainous region.
- Ina Drew Out at JPMorgan: Masters of the universe, perhaps not. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Ina Drew, the top-earning chief investment officer at JPMorgan Chase who put her stamp on the trades that went bust, resigned Monday. CEO Jamie Dimon said in a statement that Drew’s “vast contributions to our company should not be overshadowed by these events.”
- Papoulias Prepares Final Appeal: Greek President Karolos Papoulias prepared for another meeting with leaders of the country’s main political parties Monday in a final effort to forge a unity government that may stave off Greece’s exit from the euro. His chances of success, however, looked slim.
- Obama Knocks Mitt’s Bain Record: Barack Obama’s camp takes aim at Romney’s corporate experience with a 2-minute ad out Monday, and as tales of corporate bloodsucking go, this one could have been penned by Bram Stoker. The ad revisits the closure of a plant owned by GST Steel, which was acquired by Romney and Bain Capital and then shut down. “They made as much money off it as they could and they closed it down, they filed for bankruptcy, without any concern for the families or the communities,” says former steelworker Joe Soptic in the ad.
Photo: Roy Lichenstein’s “Ohhh…Alright…” (1964) More of Lichtenstein’s gallery, or watch Blake Gopnik, our art critic, discuss his work.
© Estate of Roy Lichtenstein / Courtesy of Art Institute of Chicago