Five Dumbest Things on Wall Street: Nov. 28
GM Jettisons Jet
General Motors (GM) is having trouble selling cars, but maybe it will have better luck unloading a pair of airplanes.
The CEOs representing the Big 3 automakers flew into a storm of criticism last week for taking private jets to Washington, D.C., to lobby Congress for a multibillion dollar-bailout package. The irony was so delicious that Rep. Gary L. Ackerman (D., N.Y.) said it's "almost like seeing a guy show up at the soup kitchen in a high hat and tuxedo.''
GM Chief Executive Rick Wagoner certainly got the point, although he would not publicly admit it. The nation's largest automaker announced on Friday it was already in the process of returning two of its leased corporate jets, even before Wagoner's humbling -- and pricey -- round trip to Capitol Hill.So Friday's announcement about GM jettisoning its jets was pure coincidence? Sure, and we have a bridge to sell you! GM started the year with lease contracts on seven jets, but cost-cutting eliminated two last September, before this week's decision to ditch two more. Ford's (F) air fleet currently numbers five jets, which the company owns. A Ford spokesman says the company is still trying to figure out what to do about its air travel plans. Maybe Wagoner and Ford CEO Alan Mulally can hitch a ride on Chrysler CEO Robert Nardelli's luxury jet on their next fund-raising journey to Washington. Nardelli famously pocketed more than $210 million in severance when he left Home Depot (HD) to join Chrysler's parent Cerberus, sneering at shareholder protests in the process. Nardelli obviously doesn't care about keeping up appearances, even when prostrating himself for public money. So in case you didn't get the message in Detroit, it's time to cool your jets. Dumb-o-meter score: 95 -- What dumb idea will the Big 3 dream up next? We can't wait to see.
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.
- Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV